A higher level of linoleic acid, and possibly arachidonic acid, is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease

In April 2019 researchers from Australia, UK, USA, The Netherlands, Sweden, Japan, Denmark, Germany, Finland, Canada, Singapore, France, Taiwan and Iceland published the results of their multiple studies to assess the association of linoleic acid and arachidonic levels with cardiovascular disease, in particular coronary heart disease, ischaemic stroke and cardiovascular mortality. A total of 30 studies in 13 countries involving 68,659 individuals were included. Levels of linoleic acid and arachidonic acid levels were measured as a percentage of total fatty acids. The individuals were followed up for between 2.5 and 31.9 years during which time 15,198 cardiovascular occurred. Results showed that higher levels of linoleic acid were significantly associated with lower risks of overall cardiovascular disease, cardiovascular mortality and ischaemic stroke, and non-significantly with lower coronary heart disease risk. In addition, higher levels of arachidonic acid were associated with lower risk of total cardiovascular disease.

Marklund M et al. Biomarkers of Dietary Omega-6 Fatty Acids and Incident Cardiovascular Disease and Mortality: An Individual-Level Pooled Analysis of 30 Cohort Studies. Circulation. 2019 Apr 11. [Epub ahead of print]

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