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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2008 Sep 16;52(12):988-96. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2008.06.018.

Fish, omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, and mortality from cardiovascular diseases in a nationwide community-based cohort of Japanese men and women the JACC (Japan Collaborative Cohort Study for Evaluation of Cancer Risk) Study.

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Department of Public Health Medicine, Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences, and Institute of Community Medicine, University of Tsukuba, Tsukuba, Japan.



The objective of our study was to test the hypothesis that fish or omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) intakes would be inversely associated with risks of mortality from ischemic heart disease, cardiac arrest, heart failure, stroke, and total cardiovascular disease.


Data on associations of dietary intake of fish and of omega-3 PUFA with risk of cardiovascular disease among Asian societies have been limited.


We conducted a prospective study consisting of 57,972 Japanese men and women. Dietary intakes of fish and omega-3 PUFA were determined by food frequency questionnaire, and participants were followed up for 12.7 years. Hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated according to quintiles of fish or omega-3 PUFA intake.


We observed generally inverse associations of fish and omega-3 PUFA intakes with risks of mortality from heart failure (multivariable hazard ratio [95% confidence interval] for highest versus lowest quintiles = 0.76 [0.53 to 1.09] for fish and 0.58 [0.36 to 0.93] for omega-3 PUFA). Associations with ischemic heart disease or myocardial infarction were relatively weak and not statistically significant after adjustment for potential risk factors. Neither fish nor omega-3 PUFA dietary intake was associated with mortality from total stroke, its subtypes, or cardiac arrest. For mortality from total cardiovascular disease, intakes of fish and omega-3 PUFA were associated with 18% to 19% lower risk.


We found an inverse association between fish and omega-3 PUFA dietary intakes and cardiovascular mortality, especially for heart failure, suggesting a protective effect of fish intake on cardiovascular diseases.

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