That’s the finding of a team of researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health, who reviewed data from 187,382 participants in three studies.
The report, published in the British Medical Journal, excluded everyone who already had diabetes, cardiovascular disease, or cancer. The researchers looked at how often the people ate fruit, as well as how often they ate the following specific fruits, including:
- Grapes, raisins, and prunes
- Peaches, plums, and apricots
- Apples or pears
- Oranges and grapefruit
- Strawberries and blueberries
People who ate at least two servings each week of certain whole fruits — particularly blueberries, grapes, and apples — reduced their risk for diabetes by as much as 23 percent compared to those who ate less than one serving per month. Though it isn’t known why apples had this effect, berries and grapes contain anthocyanin, which also lowers heart attack risk.