ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
New Spray Could Benefit Cystic Fibrosis Patients
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Acupuncture Eases Breast Cancer Treatment Side Effects
When Healing Becomes a Commodity
Supplement Hampers Thyroid Cancer Treatment
ANIMAL CARE
Safe Toys for Dogs
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
BONES & JOINTS
Genes May Help Drive Rotator Cuff Injury
Gene Plays Key Role in Clubfoot
Resistance Training Boosts Mobility in Knee Arthritis Patients
CANCER
Exercise Cuts Lung Cancer Risk in Ex-Smokers by 45%
Selenium, Omega-3s May Stave Off Colorectal Cancer
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
CAREGIVING
Bariatric Surgery Centers Don't Deliver Better Outcomes
Few Hospitals Embracing Electronic Health Record Systems
ER Less Likely to Diagnose Stroke in Younger Folks
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
Obesity Linked to Heart Failure Risk
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
COSMETIC
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
DENTAL, ORAL
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Laser Technology Spots Cavities Before They Start
DIABETES
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
Doctors Urged to Screen Diabetics for Sleep Apnea
Patients' Photos Help Boost Radiologists' Accuracy
DIET, NUTRITION
B Vitamins Might Lower Stroke Risk
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Natural Oils Help Lower Body Fat For Some
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Global Warming May Bring More Respiratory Woes
Smog Standards Need Tightening, Activists Say
Gene Mutation May Cause Some Cases of Seasonal Affective Disorder
EYE CARE, VISION
Kids Who Spend More Time Outdoors Have Better Vision
FDA Goes After Unapproved Eye Washes, Skin Ointments
Brain Adapts to Age-Related Eye Disease
FITNESS
Exercise Keeps the Brain Young
Many Cancer Survivors Don't Adopt Healthy Lifestyle
MRSA Infections Can Bug Fitness Buffs
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
GENERAL HEALTH
Winter's Bitter Cold Poses Health Dangers
How Weight Loss Can Help the Heart
Maximize Your Run
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Most Fast-Food French Fries Cooked in Unhealthiest Oil
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
Walk Long, Slow and Often to Help the Heart
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Green Tea May Help Brain Cope With Sleep Disorders
Don't Leave Your Kids In The Car !
Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists
MEN'S HEALTH
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Lots of Sex May Prevent Erectile Dysfunction
MENTAL HEALTH
Environmental Chemicals May Affect Male Reproduction
A Simple 'Thank You' Brings Rewards to All
Brain Scans Show How Humans 'Hear' Emotion
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
SENIORS
Seniors Who Volunteer May Live Longer
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
Money May Matter, Health-Wise, in Old Age
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
Natural Oils Help Lower Body Fat For Some
Women Smokers Lose 14.5 Years Off Life Span
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Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health

MONDAY, April 13 (HealthDay News) -- Vegetables, nuts and the so-called "Mediterranean" diet are heart-friendly, while trans fats and foods with a high glycemic index can harm your heart, say researchers who reviewed 189 studies published between 1950 and 2007.

The studies included 146 prospective cohort studies (which examined past habits of participants) and 43 randomized controlled trials (volunteers were randomly assigned to consume a certain kind of diet).

"The relationship between dietary factors and coronary heart disease has been a major focus of health research for almost half a century," wrote Andrew Mente, of the Population Health Research Institute, and colleagues. But even though there are many published studies on the topic, "the strength of the evidence supporting valid associations has not been evaluated systemically in a single investigation."

When they pooled the findings from the studies and applied a predefined algorithm, Mente and his team identified "strong evidence of a causal relationship for protective factors, including intake of vegetables, nuts and monosaturated fatty acids and Mediterranean, prudent and high-quality dietary patterns, and harmful factors, including intake of trans-fatty acids and foods with a high glycemic index or load and a Western dietary pattern," the researchers wrote.

"Among these dietary exposures, however, only a Mediterranean dietary pattern has been studied in randomized controlled trials and significantly associated with coronary heart disease," they said.

The Mediterranean died is typically loaded with fruits, vegetables, grains and olive oil.

The researchers also found modest evidence of a causal relationship between heart health and several other foods and vitamins, such as fish, omega-3 fatty acids from marine sources, folate, whole grains, alcohol, fruits, fiber, dietary vitamins E and C and beta carotene. There was weak evidence of a causal relationship between heart health and vitamin E and C in supplement form, saturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids and total fats, alpha-linoleic acid, meat, eggs and milk.

"The modest or weak evidence of these dietary exposures is mostly consistent with the findings of randomized controlled trials, although randomized controlled trials have yet to be conducted for several factors," the study authors wrote.

"Taken together, these findings support a causal relationship between only a few dietary exposures and coronary heart disease, whereas the evidence of most individual nutrients or foods is too modest to be conclusive," the team said.

The review was published in the April 13 issue of the journal Archives of Internal Medicine.

"Although investigations of dietary components may help to shed light on mechanisms behind the benefits of dietary patterns, it is unlikely that modifying the intake of a few nutrients or foods would substantially influence coronary outcomes," Mente and colleagues concluded. "Our findings support the strategy of investigating dietary patterns in cohort studies and randomized controlled trials for common and complex chronic diseases such as coronary heart disease."

More information

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has more about eating for a healthy heart.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: JAMA/Archives journals, news release, April 13, 2009

Last Updated: April 13, 2009

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