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Am J Clin Nutr. 2001 Oct;74(4):457-63.

alpha-Linolenic acid intake is not beneficially associated with 10-y risk of coronary artery disease incidence: the Zutphen Elderly Study.

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  • 1Department of Chronic Diseases Epidemiology, National Institute of Public Health and the Environment, Bilthoven, Netherlands.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Data on the relation between alpha-linolenic acid intake and coronary artery disease (CAD) are limited. Other dietary components appear to modify the reported relation between alpha-linolenic acid intake and CAD.

OBJECTIVE:

We examined whether dietary alpha-linolenic acid intake was inversely associated with risk of CAD.

DESIGN:

We prospectively studied 667 men aged 64-84 y from the Zutphen Elderly Study who were free of CAD at baseline. Dietary intake was assessed by using a cross-check dietary history method.

RESULTS:

During the 10-y follow-up, we documented 98 cases of CAD. After adjustment for age, standard coronary risk factors, and intake of trans fatty acids and other nutrients, alpha-linolenic acid intake was not significantly associated with CAD risk. The relative risk of CAD for the highest compared with the lowest tertile of alpha-linolenic acid intake was 1.68 (95% CI: 0.86, 3.29). alpha-Linolenic acid intake from sources containing trans fatty acids was also nonsignificantly, yet positively, associated with CAD risk. alpha-Linolenic acid intake from foods that did not contain trans fatty acids was not associated with CAD risk, the relative risk of CAD for the highest compared with the lowest tertile was 1.15 (95% CI: 0.63, 2.11).

CONCLUSION:

We did not observe a beneficial effect of dietary alpha-linolenic acid intake on the risk of 10-y CAD incidence. Investigating this hypothesis was complicated by the association between intakes of alpha-linolenic acid and trans fatty acids. Given the results of current prospective studies, a protective cardiac effect of alpha-linolenic acid is questionable.

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PMID:
11566643
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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