α-Linolenic Acid Cuts Risk of Myocardial Infarction

And linoleic acid appears beneficial in reduction of blood pressure

TUESDAY, July 8 (HealthDay News) -- Increased intake of the omega-3 fatty acid α-linolenic acid is associated with decreased risk of non-fatal acute myocardial infarction and increased intake of the omega-6 fatty acid linoleic acid is associated with reduction in systolic and diastolic blood pressure, according to two articles published online July 7 in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association and Hypertension.

In the first article, Hannia Campos, Ph.D., of the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, and colleagues performed a case-control study of 1,819 patients with a first non-fatal acute myocardial infarction and 1,819 control cases to determine the relationship between α-linolenic acid and acute myocardial infarction. They found an inverse relationship between α-linolenic acid intake and risk of myocardial infarction, but the relationship was non-linear and did not increase beyond 1.79 g/day of α-linolenic acid.

In the second study, Katsuyuki Miura, of the Shiga University of Medical Science in Otsu, Japan, and colleagues analyzed data from the International Study of Macro-Micronutrients and Blood Pressure. When limiting the sample to the 2,238 patients without a diagnosis of or undergoing treatment for high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease or diabetes and not on a special diet or supplements, linoleic acid intake 2 standard deviations greater than the mean was associated with decreases in systolic and diastolic blood pressure of -1.42/-0.91 mm Hg. Similar differences in blood pressure were seen with polyunsaturated fatty acid intake, the report indicates.

"These results on a major coronary heart disease/cardiovascular disease risk factor lend support to current recommendations for increased ingestion of polyunsaturated fatty acid from vegetable sources," Miura's team concludes.

Abstract - Campos
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Abstract - Miura
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