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Am J Epidemiol. 2008 Apr 15;167(8):954-61. doi: 10.1093/aje/kwm395. Epub 2008 Feb 12.

Folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, and methionine intakes and risk of stroke subtypes in male smokers.

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National Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.


The associations of dietary folate, vitamin B(6), vitamin B(12), and methionine intakes with risk of stroke subtypes were examined among 26,556 male Finnish smokers, aged 50-69 years, enrolled in the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention Study. Dietary intake was assessed at baseline by using a validated food frequency questionnaire. During a mean follow-up of 13.6 years, from 1985 through 2004, 2,702 cerebral infarctions, 383 intracerebral hemorrhages, and 196 subarachnoid hemorrhages were identified from national registers. In analyses adjusting for age and cardiovascular risk factors, a high folate intake was associated with a statistically significant lower risk of cerebral infarction but not intracerebral or subarachnoid hemorrhages. The multivariate relative risk of cerebral infarction was 0.80 (95% confidence interval: 0.70, 0.91; p(trend) = 0.001) for men in the highest versus lowest quintile of folate intake. Vitamin B(6), vitamin B(12), and methionine intakes were not significantly associated with any subtype of stroke. These findings in men suggest that a high dietary folate intake may reduce the risk of cerebral infarction.

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