Dietary Fats and Your Heart

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Story Updated: Mar 24, 2014

The presumption has been that polyunsaturated fatty acids are generally friendlier to the heart than saturated fats.

But now a broad new review of past research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine suggests that there is actually little hard evidence to support that notion. Experts analyzed 32 dietary studies involving more than 530,000 men and women who were tracked for 5 to 23 years. After comparing nutrition records with heart disease histories- the study team found sparse backup for the idea that consuming high amounts of polyunsaturated fats such as omega-3 fatty acids... whether through food or daily supplements ... significantly reduces the risk for cardiovascular disease.

The review similarly failed to unearth proof for the other half of the equation: that consuming lower amounts of saturated fats boosts heart health.

The investigators are calling for more research.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with the news doctors are reading health news that matters to you.

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