Eating a serving of broccoli or leafy greens instead of a cheeseburger could help people battle the metabolic processes that lead to obesity and heart disease, according to a new University of Florida study.
In this recent study, researchers looked at a group of 54 young adults, analyzing their dietary patterns over a 3-day period, repeating the same measurement eight weeks later. The participants were broken into two groups: normal weight and overweight-obese.
All study participants consumed about the same amount of calories, however the overweight-obese adults consumed fewer plant-based foods and subsequently fewer protective trace minerals and phytochemicals and more saturated fats.
Overweight-obese adults also had higher levels of oxidative stress and inflammation than their normal-weight peers and these processes are related to the onset of obesity, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and joint disease.
People who substitute one or two pre-packaged food choices a day with phytochemical-rich foods like broccoli, kale, spinach or onions are building habits that fights obesity and disease slowly over time, says the study author.
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This study was published online in advance of the print edition of the October 2009 issue of the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics.
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