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Diet linked to Diabetes

New research suggests you really should eat your greens.

Eating more spinach and other green leafy vegetables can reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes, a study published by the British Medical Journal (BMJ) has said.

The research wades into a controversial area, and its authors caution more investigation is needed to confirm the findings.

A team led by Patrice Carter at the University of Leicester reviewed six studies involving 220,000 people that explored the link between fruit and vegetable consumption and Type 2, or adult-onset, diabetes.

Eating one and a half extra servings of green leafy vegetables cut the risk of diabetes by 14 per cent, but eating more fruit and vegetables combined had negligible impact, they found.

Type 2, the most common form of diabetes. More than 220 million people worldwide are afflicted with the disease, which kills more than one million people every year, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

As obesity rates increase, the number of deaths could double between 2005 and 2020, the WHO said.

Nutrition and exercise were known factors in prevention, but which foods worked best and why remain disputed, because so few good-quality studies had been carried out.

Carter’s team suggests that green leafy vegetables are useful because they are high in antioxidants and magnesium, but more work was needed to bear this out.

AAP

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