Wild plums — planted as street trees in many towns and cities — could save your life. Out of 10 indigenous fruits studied by Cape Town academics‚ wild plums scored the highest for antioxidant content, meaning they neutralise cell-damaging free radicals. Researchers from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) say fruit and vegetables prolong life but many South Africans eat none‚ largely because of affordability and availability. "Freely available indigenous fruits that have been traditionally used by rural peoples constitute an untapped resource that deserves to be promoted more extensively‚" they write in the South African Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Daniela Kucich and Merrill Wicht‚ of the CPUT chemistry department‚ said the lack of fruit and vegetables was linked to cancer and cardiovascular disease. It also led to chronic malnutrition‚ which was linked to lower respiratory infections‚ diarrhoea and stunting. "An estimated 21.5% of the population of SA falls below ...

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