<i>Eating citrus lowers stroke risk in women </i>
Women who regularly eat citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruit may have a lower risk of blood-clot related stroke, according to a US study published on Thursday.
Researchers looked at 14 years of data from a US nurses survey that included 69,622 women who reported what they ate, including details on fruit and vegetable consumption, every four years.
The aim was to study the effects of flavonoids -- a class of compounds present in fruits, vegetables, dark chocolate and red wine -- on health.
"Studies have shown higher fruit, vegetable and specifically vitamin C intake is associated with reduced stroke risk," said Aedin Cassidy, lead author of the study in the Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.
"Flavonoids are thought to provide some of that protection through several mechanisms, including improved blood vessel function and an anti-inflammatory effect," added Cassidy, a professor of nutrition at Norwich Medical School in the University of East Anglia.
Previous research has suggested that citrus-derived flavonoids may help prevent weight gain and metabolic syndrome which can lead to Type 2 diabetes and higher risk of heart disease.