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Singapore study

Fruit and vegetable consumption will maintain cognitive function when ageing

A team led by Professor Koh Woon Puay from the Healthy Longevity Translational Research Programme at the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, studied the data on consumption of fruits and vegetables among middle-aged Singaporean Chinese. The result indicates that those who ate a high intake of fruits and vegetables, in terms of quantity as well as in variety, had significantly reduced risk of cognitive impairment.

The team evaluated data from 16,737 participants of the Singapore Chinese Health Study, a population-based cohort study established between 1993 and 1998 by a recruitment of 63,257 Chinese participants aged 45 to 74 years in Singapore.

As a result of global population ageing, the number of people living with dementia will almost double every 20 years, and is estimated to reach 131.5 million in 2050 worldwide. A healthy diet is among the first steps to preserve cognitive function in ageing.

Prof Koh says, “Dietary guidelines from the World Health Organization (WHO) and many countries have recently emphasized that, on top of eating enough, increasing the variety in the consumption of fruits and vegetables is also important in improving health.”


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