Fruit and vegetable intake and the risk of cataract in women.Am J Clin Nutr 2005; 81(6):1417-22AJ
Prospective data on cataract in relation to total fruit and vegetable intake are limited.
We aimed to examine whether higher fruit and vegetable intake reduces the risk of cataract and cataract extraction in a large, prospective cohort of women.
Fruit and vegetable intake was assessed at baseline in 1993 among 39 876 female health professionals with the use of a validated, semiquantitative food-frequency questionnaire. A total of 35 724 of these women were free of a diagnosis of cataract at baseline and were followed for incident cataract and cataract extraction. Cataract was defined as an incident, age-related lens opacity responsible for a reduction in best-corrected visual acuity to 20/30 or worse, based on self-report confirmed by medical record review. Individuals, rather than eyes, were the unit of analysis.
During an average of 10 y of follow-up, 2067 cataracts and 1315 cataract extractions were confirmed. Compared with women in the lowest quintile of fruit and vegetable intake, women with higher intakes had modest 10-15% reduced risks of cataract (P for trend < 0.05). For cataract extraction, no significant inverse trend was observed (P for trend = 0.12).
These prospective data suggest that high intake of fruit and vegetables may have a modest protective effect on cataract.