The Power of Produce

The Lempert Report
May 06, 2014

It's something that's been drilled into us since childhood… fruits and vegetables are good for us!

Exactly how good are they? A new study set out to answer that questions and the results are pretty interesting. Researchers at University College in London tracked the self-reported eating habits of more than 65,000 people over 12 years. Results discovered that the participants who consumed seven or more daily portions—each roughly half a cup—of fresh fruits or vegetables reduced their risk of death during the study period by 42 percent.

In addition, consuming that same amount dropped the specific risk of dying from cancer by 25 percent, and from heart disease by 31 percent. 

Even those who ate far less fruits and veggies had positive results. Eating one to three daily portions cut the risk of death by 14 percent. Fresh vegetables provided the biggest benefit, with each portion reducing overall risk of death by 16 percent. Unfortunately, but perhaps unsurprisingly, canned fruits and fruits juices didn't have any positive effect. 

This study is just one more reminder of the power of produce. Supermarkets can use findings such as these to promote their produce sections. Constantly re-educate customers on the health benefits of fruits and veggies by creating displays and signage that guide consumers to smart, nutritious decisions.  Retailers that help customers incorporate these healthy choices into their daily lives will develop trust and and ensure what a supermarket should be, a community center for health.