According to new research from Edith Cowan University, Australia, getting more greens into diet could cut the risk of heart disease and stroke by as much as 40 per cent.
Researchers from ECU’s School of Medical and Health Sciences studied the diets of more than 1000 Western Australian women, focusing on nitrate intake derived from vegetables.
They found that over a 15 year period, those women who had the highest intake of nitrate from vegetables had up to a 40 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease or stroke.
Nitrate is a compound that is naturally present in the environment and is essential for plant growth. Researchers found that leafy green vegetables, such as spinach, lettuce, and kale had the highest amounts of nitrate, followed by radish, beetroot, and celery.
People get roughly 80 percent of their average nitrate intake from vegetables so they are the primary source. About 75 g per day (1 serve) of green leafy vegetables would provide enough nitrate to achieve these health benefits.