Billy Hammond, professor in the department of psychology in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, recently spoke with Consumer Affairs about a new study that shows the benefits of fruits and vegetables for women.
While everyone knows it’s important to eat healthy, there can be differences in the exact amount of different nutrients that men and women need. Hammond says that while men are more prone to illness, women also get the diseases later in life and it can be much more severe. He says eating food that is high in carotenoids, like fruits and vegetables, can help lower the risk of disease and promote a longer life.
“Men and women eat about the same amount of these carotenoids, but the requirements for women are much higher,” said Hammond. “The recommendations should be different, but there are, generally, not any recommendations for men or women for dietary components that are not directly linked to deficiency disease (like vitamin C and scurvy).”
Hammond says that health recommendations should reflect the biological differences that lead to disease between men and women.
“Part of the idea for the article is that recommendations need to be changed so that women are aware that they have these vulnerabilities that they have to proactively address, so they don’t have these problems later in life,” Hammond said.