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Dietary Intake of Naturally Occurring Plant Sterols Is Related to a Lower Risk of a First Myocardial Infarction in Men but Not in Women in Northern Sweden

Journal article
Authors Sofia Klingberg
Lars Ellegård
I. Johansson
J. H. Jansson
G. Hallmans
Anna Winkvist
Published in Journal of Nutrition
Volume 143
Issue 10
Pages 1630-1635
ISSN 0022-3166
Publication year 2013
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine and Clinical Nutrition
Pages 1630-1635
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.3945/jn.113.178707
Keywords SERUM-CHOLESTEROL CONCENTRATION, ENERGY-INTAKE, RAPESEED OIL, FOOD-INTAKE, OLIVE OIL, COHORT, DISEASE, NETHERLANDS, ABSORPTION, HEALTH
Subject categories Public health science

Abstract

Dietary intake of naturally occurring plant sterols is inversely related to serum cholesterol concentrations. Elevated serum cholesterol increases the risk of myocardial infarction (MI), but it is unknown if this can be reduced by dietary intake of naturally occurring plant sterols. Our aim was to investigate if a high intake of naturally occurring plant sterols is related to a lower risk of contracting a first MI. The analysis included 1005 prospective cases (219 women, 786 men) and 3148 matched referents (723 women, 2425 men), aged 29-73 y at baseline, from the population-based Northern Sweden Health and Disease Study. A food frequency. questionnaire (FFQ) was completed at baseline. Absolute plant sterol intake was inversely related to the risk of a first MI in men (OR highest vs. lowest quartile = 0.70; 95% CI: 0.53, 0.85; P-trend = 0.006) but not in women. After adjustment for confounders, the estimated risk was somewhat attenuated (OR highest vs. lowest quartile = 0.71; 95% CI: 0.55,0.92; P-trend = 0.067), suggesting that increasing sterol intake from 150 to 340 mg/d reduces the risk of a first MI by 29%. Energy-adjusted plant sterol intake was not related to the risk of a first MI in either men or women. In conclusion, the findings of this observational study show that a high absolute intake of naturally occurring plant sterols is significantly related to a lower risk of a first MI in men in northern Sweden, whereas no significant relation was seen for energy-adjusted plant sterol intake. In women, no significant associations were found. The results from this study show that intake of plant sterols may be important in prevention of MI.

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