Dietary and lifestyle changes made by some Chinese citizens after immigrating to the United States actually helped reduce their risk of stroke. A 2-year American Heart Association study presented in June 2003 compared 134 Chinese immigrants who suffered a stroke with a control group of 132 stroke-free Chinese immigrants. The average age of the participants was 74. The researchers found that the risk of stroke was significantly reduced for members of the control group.
?In China, the food is very salty. Salt is often used as a preservative for fish and meat,? said lead researcher Jing Fang, MD, of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. People in the nonstroke control group were more likely to reduce their salt and sugar intake and to eat fresh fish and meat at least 3 times a week after immigrating.