22 March 2016 In Cardiovascular System

BACKGROUND: Although considerable research describes the cardiovascular effects of habitual moderate and heavy alcohol consumption, the immediate risks following alcohol intake have not been well characterized. Based on its physiological effects, alcohol may have markedly different effects on immediate and long-term risk.

METHODS AND RESULTS: We searched CINAHL, Embase, and PubMed from inception to March 12, 2015, supplemented with manual screening for observational studies assessing the association between alcohol intake and cardiovascular events in the following hours and days. We calculated pooled relative risks and 95% confidence intervals for the association between alcohol intake and myocardial infarction, ischemic stroke, and hemorrhagic stroke using DerSimonian and Laird random-effects models to model any alcohol intake or dose-response relationships of alcohol intake and cardiovascular events. Among 1056 citations and 37 full-text articles reviewed, 23 studies (29 457 participants) were included. Moderate alcohol consumption was associated with an immediately higher cardiovascular risk that was attenuated after 24 hours, and even protective for myocardial infarction and hemorrhagic stroke (approximately 2-4 drinks: relative risk=30% lower risk) and protective against ischemic stroke within 1 week (approximately 6 drinks: 19% lower risk). In contrast, heavy alcohol drinking was associated with higher cardiovascular risk in the following day (approximately 6-9 drinks: relative risk=1.3-2.3) and week (approximately 19-30 drinks: relative risk=2.25-6.2).

CONCLUSIONS: There appears to be a consistent finding of an immediately higher cardiovascular risk following any alcohol consumption, but, by 24 hours, only heavy alcohol intake conferred continued risk.

24 February 2016 In Cancer

BACKGROUND: There is limited evidence on the association between dietary folate intake and the risk of breast cancer (BC) by hormone receptor expression in the tumors. We investigated the relationship between dietary folate and BC risk using data from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).

METHODS: A total of 367993 women age 35 to 70 years were recruited in 10 European countries. During a median follow-up of 11.5 years, 11575 women with BC were identified. Dietary folate intake was estimated from country-specific dietary questionnaires. Cox proportional hazards regression models were used to quantify the association between dietary variables and BC risk. BC tumors were classified by receptor status. Subgroup analyses were performed by menopausal status and alcohol intake. Intake of other B vitamins was considered. All statistical tests were two-sided.

RESULTS: A borderline inverse association was observed between dietary folate and BC risk (hazard ratio comparing top vs bottom quintile [HRQ5-Q1] = 0.92, 95% CI = 0.83 to 1.01, P trend = .037). In premenopausal women, we observed a statistically significant trend towards lower risk in estrogen receptor-negative BC (HRQ5-Q1 = 0.66, 95% CI = 0.45 to 0.96, P trend = .042) and progesterone receptor-negative BC (HRQ5-Q1 = 0.70, 95% CI = 0.51 to 0.97, P trend = .021). No associations were found in postmenopausal women. A 14% reduction in BC risk was observed when comparing the highest with the lowest dietary folate tertiles in women having a high (>12 alcoholic drinks/week) alcohol intake (HRT3-T1 = 0.86, 95% CI = 0.75 to 0.98, P interaction = .035).

CONCLUSIONS: Higher dietary folate intake may be associated with a lower risk of sex hormone receptor-negative BC in premenopausal women.

24 February 2016 In Cancer

IMPORTANCE: Breast cancer is the leading cause of female cancer burden, and its incidence has increased by more than 20% worldwide since 2008. Some observational studies have suggested that the Mediterranean diet may reduce the risk of breast cancer.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effect of 2 interventions with Mediterranean diet vs the advice to follow a low-fat diet (control) on breast cancer incidence.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: The PREDIMED study is a 1:1:1 randomized, single-blind, controlled field trial conducted at primary health care centers in Spain. From 2003 to 2009, 4282 women aged 60 to 80 years and at high cardiovascular disease risk were recruited after invitation by their primary care physicians.

INTERVENTIONS: Participants were randomly allocated to a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil, a Mediterranean diet supplemented with mixed nuts, or a control diet (advice to reduce dietary fat).

MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Breast cancer incidence was a prespecified secondary outcome of the trial for women without a prior history of breast cancer (n = 4152).

RESULTS: After a median follow-up of 4.8 years, we identified 35 confirmed incident cases of breast cancer. Observed rates (per 1000 person-years) were 1.1 for the Mediterranean diet with extra-virgin olive oil group, 1.8 for the Mediterranean diet with nuts group, and 2.9 for the control group. The multivariable-adjusted hazard ratios vs the control group were 0.32 (95% CI, 0.13-0.79) for the Mediterranean diet with extra-virgin olive oil group and 0.59 (95% CI, 0.26-1.35) for the Mediterranean diet with nuts group. In analyses with yearly cumulative updated dietary exposures, the hazard ratio for each additional 5% of calories from extra-virgin olive oil was 0.72 (95% CI, 0.57-0.90).

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: This is the first randomized trial finding an effect of a long-term dietary intervention on breast cancer incidence. Our results suggest a beneficial effect of a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil in the primary prevention of breast cancer. These results come from a secondary analysis of a previous trial and are based on few incident cases and, therefore, need to be confirmed in longer-term and larger studies.

TRIAL REGISTRATION: ISRCTN.org Identifier: ISRCTN35739639

26 November 2015 In General Health

BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: Inflammation and hemostasis contribute to the etiology of cardiovascular disease. We previously demonstrated that moderate alcohol consumption (1-2 drinks/day) may decrease risk for cardiovascular disease because of an improved lipid profile. In addition to these beneficial changes, the alcohol-mediated reduction in risk may be through its effect on inflammation and hemostasis. The objective of the study was to evaluate the effect of moderate alcohol consumption on biomarkers of inflammation and hemostasis in postmenopausal women.

SUBJECTS/METHODS: As part of a controlled diet study, 53 postmenopausal women each consumed a weight-maintaining diet plus 0, 15 and 30 g/day of alcohol for 8 weeks, in a randomized crossover design. The controlled diet contained 15%, 53% and 32% of energy from protein, carbohydrate and fat, respectively.

RESULTS: Soluble intercellular adhesion molecule-1 decreased by 5% (P<0.05) with consumption of both 15 and 30 g of alcohol. Fibrinogen concentrations decreased by 4% and 6% (P<0.05) after consumption of 15 and 30 g alcohol, respectively. Fibrin D-dimer decreased by 24% (P<0.05) after consumption of 30 g of alcohol. Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) concentrations were increased 27 and 54% (P<0.05) after consumption of 15 and 30 g of alcohol. Plasma high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, interleukin-6 and factor VII coagulant activity did not change with alcohol consumption.

CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that moderate alcohol consumption may have beneficial effects on inflammation and hemostasis in postmenopausal women, and this may be somewhat mitigated by an increase in PAI-1.European Journal of Clinical Nutrition advance online publication, 11 November 2015; doi:10.1038/ejcn.2015.182

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