Poor vegetable consumption is thought to be responsible for roughly 1.5 million untimely fatalities from cardiovascular disease each year.
Higher vegetable diet has been linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), although the independent effect of raw and cooked vegetable consumption has yet to be determined.
Between 2006 and 2010, half a million people aged 40 to 69 were recruited across England, Wales, and Scotland for the UK Biobank population-based potential cohort research. In total, 399,586 people without a history of cardiovascular disease were included in the study. While some of the subjects were omitted from the study owing to a lack of permission or other factors such as pregnancy, cancer, or missing data, others were included.
At the start of the study, the cooked vegetable intake was evaluated using a validated dietary questionnaire. The correlations between vegetable intake and cardiovascular disease incidence and mortality were estimated using multivariable Cox regression. Subjects were tested using established techniques and data collected on their socio-demographic factors, health status, medication use, and other physical parameters. The percentage drop in the likelihood ratio (LR) statistics after adjustment for confounders was used to estimate the possible effect of residual confounding.
The average age was 56, and women made up 55 percent of the population. Raw and cooked vegetable consumption averaged 2.3 and 2.8 tablespoons per day, respectively. During the 12-year follow-up period, there were 18,052 major cardiovascular events and 4,406 cardiovascular disease fatalities.
The LR values for the correlations of raw vegetables with cardiovascular disease incidence and death were lowered by 82 and 87 percent, respectively, after possible confounders were removed. Consumption of raw, rather than cooked, vegetables was linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. This study implies that the evidence on the burden of cardiovascular disease caused by low vegetable diet in high-income populations has to be reexamined.
But the research has its limitations too. There was no adjustment for total calorie consumption, and vegetable intakes were self-reported in the baseline dietary questionnaire. Intake of specific varieties of raw or cooked vegetables, as well as changes in cooking methods, were not examined.