ω-3 Fatty Acids, Xanthophylls Don't Cut CVD Risk

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ω-3 Fatty Acids, Xanthophylls Don't Cut CVD Risk
ω-3 Fatty Acids, Xanthophylls Don't Cut CVD Risk

(HealthDay News) — Dietary supplementation with ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids or macular xanthophylls do not seem to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in older adults with age-related macular degeneration, according to a study published online March 17 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Denise E. Bonds, MD, MPH, from the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD, and colleagues examined whether supplementing diet with long-chain ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids or with macular xanthophylls was associated with the rate of CVD. A total of 4,203 participants from the Cardiovascular Outcome Study (aged 50–85 years) with age-related macular degeneration in one eye, were recruited and randomized to receive daily supplementation with long-chain ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (docosahexaenoic acid [DHA] and eicosapentaenoic acid [EPA]), macular xanthophylls (lutein and zeaxanthin), combination of the two, or matching placebos. Participants were followed for a median of 4.8 years.

The researchers found that there were 459 cardiovascular events that met one of the study definitions for a CVD outcome. There was no reduction in the risk of CVD or secondary CVD outcomes for DHA + EPA (primary outcome: hazard ratio, 0.95; 95% confidence interval, 0.78–1.17) or lutein + zeaxanthin (primary outcome: hazard ratio, 0.94; 95% confidence interval, 0.77–1.15), in intention-to-treat analysis. There were no treatment group-related differences in adverse events or serious adverse events.

"Our results are consistent with a growing body of evidence from clinical trials that have found little CVD benefit from moderate levels of dietary supplementation," the authors write.

Two authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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