Whole Grain Diet Decreases Cardiovascular-related Mortalities

Internal Medicine World Report, March 2015,

Independent of other dietary and lifestyle factors, a whole grain diet is associated with a lower risk of overall and cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality, a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine claimed.

Independent of other dietary and lifestyle factors, a whole grain diet is associated with a lower risk of overall and cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality, a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine claimed.

Hongyu Wu, PhD, a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) and her colleagues analyzed the data of 74,341 women from the Nurses’ Health Study and 43,744 men from the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, focusing on food intake recorded every 2 to 4 years through food frequency questionnaires (FFQs). In addition to focusing on food intake, the team assessed the National Death Index to verify mortality and cause of death.

Of the 26,920 deaths occurring during the study period, the investigators found a lower occurrence of CVD-associated and all cause mortalities among those with a high-grain diet. However, they noted the regimen was not linked to a lower cancer risk.

For every extra serving (28 g/d) of grain consumed, the team noted there was a 5% and (95% CI, 2%-7%) 9% (95% CI, 4%-13%) decrease in all-cause and CVD mortality, respectively. There was also no noteworthy association with cancer mortality (HR, 0.98; 95% CI, 0.94-1.02).

“In these 2 cohorts of US men and women, we found that a higher whole grain intake, with or without added bran or germ, was associated with reduced mortality, especially deaths due to CVD. These associations were independent of demographic and lifestyle predictors of mortality, as well as the overall dietary quality, and largely persisted among participants with various risk profiles,” the authors reported.

In light of their findings, the researchers continued endorsing a high-grain diet to decrease CVD prevalence and mortality.

“These findings further support current dietary guidelines that recommend increasing whole grain consumption to facilitate primary and secondary prevention of chronic diseases and also provide promising evidence that suggests a diet enriched with whole grains may confer benefits toward extended life expectancy,” the authors concluded.