Dietary fatty acid substitution theoretically associated with lower risk of ischemic heart disease
The replacement of saturated fatty acids (SFAs) with unsaturated fatty acids (UFAs), especially polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), has been associated with a lower risk of ischemic heart disease (IHD). Whether this replacement is beneficial for drug-treated patients with cardiac disease is not yet clear, so we examined the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and IHD mortality when the sum of SFAs and trans fatty acids (TFAs) was theoretically replaced by total UFAs, PUFAs, or cis monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs).
Participants were part of the Alpha Omega Cohort (read more about the AOC population here). The patients in the Alpha Omega Cohort consumed, on average, 17.5% of energy from total UFAs, 13.0% from SFAs, and <1% from TFAs.
Substitution modeling yielded significantly lower risks of CVD and IHD mortality when replacing SFAs plus TFAs with total UFAs or PUFAs, whereas the hazard ratios in cis MUFA quintiles were nonsignificant. In continuous analyses as well, replacement of SFAs plus TFAs with total UFAs, PUFAs, or cis MUFAs (per 5% of energy) was associated with significantly lower risks of CVD mortality (HRs between 0.68 and 0.75) and IHD mortality (HRs between 0.55 and 0.70).