Friday, March 2, 2012

More Ways to Reduce Stroke Risk

Sunday I mentioned research that suggests that consumption of citrus fruits can reduce the risk of one type of stroke.  A different study published yesterday offers more information about diet and stroke.

Results published in the scientific journal Annals of Neurology suggest that Trans Fatty Acids or TFA increase the risk of stroke in older women.  This is the ischemic or clot induced type of stroke.  The researchers looked at existing data  - nearly 90,000 persons.  They compared cause of death with self reported food histories.  The scientists had the data on stroke incidence and food histories from a study that lasted a long time, but they did not follow people over time.  

Women in the study who ate 6 or more grams of TFA a day had 40% more cases of this stroke than women who ate 2g or less a day.  The information was only on women, but it is likely that the same finding would occur in a sample of men.

We consume much less TFA now than we did five years ago – largely because places like NYC have banned it in their restaurant foods.  Also, retailers like to be able to say 'no trans fats' on packages. 

Limiting intake of this fat can reduce stroke.  It seems like a win win situation to me. We limit its use in the products we buy and therefore we consume less of it without really having to try.
So maybe we can think a little bit more about sugar or soda regulations.  If we can get some help limiting sugar or SSBs we can make progress in reducing obesity and diabetes.

The study summary is available here.

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