Deep South Diet Linked to Soaring Stroke Risk

A new study presented at the International Stroke Conference in Hawaii indicates that traditional southern foods increase the risk of stroke.

The study — presented by Dr. Suzanne Judd of the University of Alabama — is the first to study the effects of southern cooking on strokes, reports The Los Angeles Times. Judd reported that many aspects of southern cooking — such as fatty foods, high-sugar drinks and salty foods — all lead to increased stroke risk.

The research covered more than 20,000 people, both white and black, over age 45. The subjects had medical assessments done and self-reported their eating habits between 2003 and 2007. Those who ate a traditional southern meal more than six times each week had a 41% greater stroke risk. Such a diet also showed that blacks are 63% more likely to suffer a stroke than whites when eating a southern diet.

The issue is not geographic, though. While most of the study participants reporting a southern diet lived in the south, at least one-third of them did not.

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