Another Great Reason to Eat More Fruits and Veggies

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A higher intake of vitamin C can help prevent health problems in adults with metabolic syndrome — a condition marked by high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol levels. An estimated 35 percent of Americans have metabolic syndrome, which raises risks for heart disease, type 2 diabetes, liver disease, and dementia.

Results of a study from Oregon State University in Corvallis, published in Redox Biology, suggest that digestive tract imbalances can increase in the amount of toxins in the blood and deplete and impair the function of antioxidants like vitamins C and E. Antioxidants help reduce the harmful effects of inflammation and unstable molecules called free radicals, which can damage cells. In metabolic syndrome, a diet high in saturated fat results in imbalances in the gut microbiome, which can lead to chronic low-grade inflammation in the body.

According to the Oregon researchers, getting more vitamin C and E through diet is crucial for people with metabolic syndrome. Federal guidelines recommend 65 to 90 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C and 15 mg of vitamin E per day. Fruits and vegetables are good sources of vitamin C, and vitamin E is found in:

  • Almonds
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Wheat germ
  • Seeds and oils (sunflower, safflower, corn, and soybean, for example)

Sourced from: Oregon State University