Fruit and vegetable consumption and its contribution to inequalities in life expectancy and disability-free life expectancy in ten European countries

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Adája E. Baars
  • Jose R. Rubio-Valverde
  • Yannan Hu
  • Matthias Bopp
  • Brønnum-Hansen, Henrik
  • Ramune Kalediene
  • Mall Leinsalu
  • Pekka Martikainen
  • Enrique Regidor
  • Chris White
  • Bogdan Wojtyniak
  • Johan P. Mackenbach
  • Wilma J. Nusselder

Objectives: To assess to what extent educational differences in total life expectancy (TLE) and disability-free life expectancy (DFLE) could be reduced by improving fruit and vegetable consumption in ten European countries. Methods: Data from national census or registries with mortality follow-up, EU-SILC, and ESS were used in two scenarios to calculate the impact: the upward levelling scenario (exposure in low educated equals exposure in high educated) and the elimination scenario (no exposure in both groups). Results are estimated for men and women between ages 35 and 79 years. Results: Varying by country, upward levelling reduced inequalities in DFLE by 0.1–1.1 years (1–10%) in males, and by 0.0–1.3 years (0–18%) in females. Eliminating exposure reduced inequalities in DFLE between 0.6 and 1.7 years for males (6–15%), and between 0.1 years and 1.8 years for females (3–20%). Conclusions: Upward levelling of fruit and vegetable consumption would have a small, positive effect on both TLE and DFLE, and could potentially reduce inequalities in TLE and DFLE.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Public Health (Print Edition)
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)861-872
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • Disability-free life expectancy, Fruit and vegetable consumption, Socioeconomic inequalities, Total life expectancy

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