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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Health Update

Air Date: Week of

Living On Earth’s Diane Toomey reports on a new study that shows that high levels of Vitamin C may protect against stroke.


TOOMEY: Here's yet another reason to eat your fruits and vegetables. A recent Japanese study looked at the relationship between levels of Vitamin C in the bloodstream and risk of stroke. Researchers followed the health of more than 1,100 participants over a 20-year period. They found that those with the lowest levels of Vitamin C had a 70 percent greater risk of stroke compared to people with the highest levels of the vitamin. A high concentration of Vitamin C was beneficial even if a person had high blood pressure, a smoking habit, or engaged in very little exercise. However, those risk factors for stroke did diminish the overall benefit of the vitamin. Vitamin C levels can be increased by taking supplements, but researchers said that was a rare practice in this Japanese community. So, the benefits found in the study came almost exclusively from eating fruits and vegetables. That's this week's health update. I'm Diane Toomey.



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