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Lancet. 1985 Jan 26;1(8422):184-7.

Effects of manipulation of dietary fatty acids on clinical manifestations of rheumatoid arthritis.


The effects of manipulation of dietary fatty acids in patients with rheumatoid arthritis were investigated in a 12-week, prospective, double-blind, controlled study. 17 patients took an experimental diet high in polyunsaturated fat and low in saturated fat, with a daily supplement (1.8 g) of eicosapentaenoic acid. 20 patients took a control diet with a lower polyunsaturated to saturated fat ratio and a placebo supplement. Compliance was monitored by plasma lipid gas-chromatographic analysis, Ivy bleeding time, and diet diaries. Results favoured the experimental group at 12 weeks for morning stiffness and number of tender joints. On follow-up evaluation 1-2 months after stopping the diet, the experimental group had deteriorated significantly in patient and physician global evaluation of disease activity, pain assessment, and number of tender joints. The control group had improved in morning stiffness and number of tender joints on follow-up.

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