According to the American Diabetes Association, there are around 26 million Americans battling with diabetes today. It is not such an uncommon disease here in the Philippines either. The good news is that it’s something you can actually prevent from happening. In fact, a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition is saying that eating blueberries, apples, and pears can reduce your risk of developing diabetes significantly.

Researchers followed the dietary records of 200,000 men and women for up to 24 years. By regularly filling out questionnaires, these participants were able to provide up-to-date information on their eating habits. Researchers were able to determine that those who ate the least blueberries only consumed half a cup or one serving of the fruit each month, while those who ate the most blueberries had two or more servings per week.

After the analysis of the data, it was discovered that none of the participants had diabetes at the onset of the study. Midway, however, some 12,600 participants were diagnosed with diabetes. Those who ate the most blueberries had a 23-percent lower risk rate of getting type 2 diabetes compared to those who didn’t eat them. The same number applies to those who ate five or more apples a week.

According to researchers, certain flavonoids—natural compounds in the fruits—could be the reason some of the participants remain diabetes-free. Even after factoring in other details such as cigarette smoking, family history, and body weight, eating blueberries and apples still seems to have a significant effect in reducing the risk of getting diabetes.

(Photo by cuppycake fiend via Flickr Creative Commons)

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