Eat your vegetables; the research is persuasive

I’ve had reason to pursue evidence-based practice in the course of my life and to eschew truthiness.

I’ve made it a practice to eat my vegetables, based on research evidence published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, and highlighted in a previous post.

More recent posts include:

Excerpts from: Fruit and vegetable consumption and all-cause, cancer and CVC mortality (2014)

How do you figure out what constitutes a serving of vegetables?

World Health Organization

An April 1, 2014 Daily Mail report regarding the relevant research notes:

  • Fresh vegetables had the strongest protective effect, followed by salad and then fruit.
  • Frozen or tinned fruit increased the risk of premature death, but experts say this could reflect shortcomings in people’s overall diet including heavy reliance on processed food.
  • The study calls for the 5-a-day message based on World Health Organisation guidance to be revised upwards, and possibly exclude portions of dried and tinned fruit, smoothies and fruit juice which contain large amounts of sugar.

[End of excerpt]

Truthiness is highly celebrated and formidably appealing.

That being said, I’m pleased to add a few additional words about truthiness from a previous blog post entitled Truthiness, stage magic, and fair trade coffee.

More Real: Art in the Age of Truthiness (2012)

More Real: Art in the Age of Truthiness (2012) provides a definition and an overview (pp. 34-35) of “truthiness.”

The underlying assumption in the latter study is that “we live in an age of ‘truthiness,’ a time when our understanding of truth may not be bound to empirical evidence – that is, to anything real, provable, or factual” (p. 34).

“Defined by the American Dialect Society,” the overview adds, “as ‘the quality of preferring concepts or facts one wishes to be true, rather than concepts or facts known to be true,’ the term has come to suggest our willingness to accept the plausible in place of the true.”

The above-noted overview notes that the American invasion of Iraq serves as an illustration of truthiness in the service of American foreign policy during the Bush administration. The related back story is outlined in a June 12, 2014 Atlantic article entitled: “Iraq’s Long Unraveling: As militants vow to seize Baghdad, the country is facing a crisis that has been building for years.”

An April 28, 2014 New Yorker article addressing the same theme is entitled: “What we left behind: An increasingly authoritarian leader, a return of sectarian violence, and a nation worried for its future.”

Truthiness is strongly appealing

By way of continuing on the theme of truthiness, a June 18, 2014 Reuters article is entitled: “Least accurate online videos on blood pressure are most popular.”

A June 17, 2014 Atlantic article is entitled: “Why Audiences Hate Hard News—and Love Pretending Otherwise: Ask readers what they want, and they’ll tell you vegetables. Watch them quietly, and they’ll mostly eat candy.

According to the article: “We prefer thoughts that come easily: Faces that are symmetrical, colors that are clear, and sentences with parallelisms. In this light, there are two problems with hard news: It’s hard and it’s new. (Parallelism!)”

[End of excerpt from a previous, widely read blog post entitled Truthiness, stage magic, and fair trade coffee.]


A Sept. 23, 2014 Medical Press article is entitled: “Fruit and vegetable consumption could be as good for your mental as your physical health.”

A Jan. 7, 2015 CBC article is entitled: “Food purchases, calories go up after holidays: Despite resolutions, consumers spent more on both healthy and less-healthy foods.”

A Jan. 26, 2015 CBC The Current podcast is entitled:”‘Fat doesn’t make you fat’: Nina Teicholz’s big surprise.”

What counts for one serving of a fruit or vegetable? A Canada Food Guide list of servings can be accessed here.

A Dec. 3, 2014 Los Angeles Times article is entitled: “To prevent or reverse obesity and its ills, timing may be everything.”

A Feb. 7, 2015 CBC article is entitled: “Why toddler foods have so much sugar and salt: ‘The child’s biology really makes them vulnerable’ to food industry.”

An August 1, 2015 New York Times article is entitled: “My Dinner With Longevity Expert Dan Buettner (No Kale Required).” The article notes: Not a lot of dairy products.

Defining powerhouse fruits and vegetables

Also of relevance is Di Noia J. Defining Powerhouse Fruits and Vegetables: A Nutrient Density Approach.

The list in the above-noted study is of a provisional nature, as I understand from the text.

A July 27, 2015 CBC article is entitled: “Superfood rankings overvalued, dietitian says.”


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