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Diet and Cardiovascular Disease Risk Studies Reviewed

Vast literature review yields advice on diet and lifestyle interventions

MONDAY, Feb. 11 (HealthDay News) -- A major literature review of research on diet and cardiovascular disease has produced the American Dietetic Association Disorders of Lipid Metabolism Guides for Practice to aid food, nutrition and other health professionals in counseling patients on lifestyle and diet. An executive summary of the guides was published in the February issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

Linda Van Horn, Ph.D., R.D., of the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, led the expert panel that identified and evaluated 83 primary and 19 review papers from 2001 to 2004 and an additional 50-plus papers through the end of 2006 to make up the ADA guides.

The guides contain summaries of documentation of health measures related to cardiovascular disease. They also review the literature on diet and blood pressure and make specific dietary recommendations for preventing cardiovascular disease. Among these recommendations is to follow a diet low in saturated and trans fatty acids and cholesterol, and rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and containing sufficient fiber; nuts, soy and legumes; and calcium, vitamin D and other vitamins and minerals.

Van Horn and colleagues state, "Numerous dietary risk factors/nutrients have been identified that affect cardiovascular disease risk factors. Because most patients present with multiple risk factors, including the diagnosis of metabolic syndrome, an individualized dietary pattern is recommended to optimize cardiovascular disease risk factor reduction while meeting nutrient needs."

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