June 14, 2024

Improving Heart Health with Prescription Fruits and Vegetables: A Shiv Telegram Media Exclusive

2 min read
Improving Heart Health with Prescription Fruits and Vegetables: A Shiv Telegram Media Exclusive

A recent study further reinforces the notion that a diet abundant in fruits and vegetables can have a positive impact on heart health. The study, conducted by researchers, focused on the effects of “produce prescriptions” in improving the health of individuals with diet-related diseases. The study involved nearly 4,000 participants across 12 states who struggle to afford nutritious food.

Under this program, participants were provided vouchers, amounting to an average of $63 per month, for up to 10 months. These vouchers could be redeemed for fresh produce at retail stores or farmers markets. The researchers closely monitored the changes in weight, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels among the participants.

The study revealed promising results. Individuals with hypertension experienced a significant decrease in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Similarly, participants with uncontrolled diabetes witnessed a significant decline in their A1C levels, a measure of blood sugar. Furthermore, approximately 85% of the participants reported that their health improved as a result of participating in the program.

Experts highlight the importance of sustaining these improvements and expanding such initiatives beyond pilot programs. Recognizing the significance of healthy eating and nutrition in healthcare, the Biden administration recently introduced a national strategy aimed at enhancing access to healthy food and incorporating nutrition into healthcare.

Although the study provided valuable insights, there is a need for larger trials with comparison groups to further support the evidence. To effectively implement food as medicine prescriptions, there is a requirement for infrastructure and market solutions, such as technology-enabled systems. Additionally, long-term support is crucial for the success of the food is medicine strategy.

Further research is necessary to determine which food assistance programs are most beneficial for different patients and the optimal amount of support required to manage their conditions. With continuous investment in research and the expansion of accessible food programs, society can take significant strides toward improving heart health and overall well-being.

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