Although doctors continually dish out drugs to prevent heart disease, researchers in England find that they could just as effectively give their patients a particular fruit. Eating one of these fruits daily, their study shows, may protect your heart about as well as a statin drug.
Researchers at the University of Oxford found that eating an apple a day can keep the cardiologist away just about as dependably as taking a statin. And apples have fewer (if any) side effects.
The heart benefits from apples derive from their fiber, minerals, vitamins and other nutrients as well as beneficial phytochemicals.
The side effects from statins means that some people taking these drugs can expect to suffer muscle pain and diabetes caused by their prescriptions.
“This study shows that small dietary changes as well as increased use of statins at a population level may significantly reduce vascular mortality,” say the Oxford scientists.
Adam Briggs of the British Heart Foundation Health Promotion Research Group at Oxford University says: “The Victorians had it about right when they came up with their brilliantly clear and simple public health advice: ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away.’ It just shows how effective small changes in diet can be, and that both drugs and healthier living can make a real difference in preventing heart disease and stroke. While no one currently prescribed statins should replace them for apples, we could all benefit from simply eating more fruit.”