July 18, 2005
Dietary Fats Protect Against Parkinson's DiseaseROTTERDAM, Netherlands--According to a study published in the June issue of Neurology (64, 12:2040-2045), the risk of developing Parkinson's disease may be reduced by a high intake of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs).Dutch researchers evaluated a prospective population-based cohort study of people aged 55 and under for associations between intake of unsaturated fatty acids and the risk of incident Parkinson's disease (PD). Subjects free of dementia and parkinsonism (n=5,289) underwent complete dietary assessment at baseline. PD was assessed through repeated in-person examination, and the cohort was continuously monitored by computer linkage to medical records. The data were analyzed using Cox proportional hazards regression models.After a mean follow-up of six years, 51 participants with incident PD were identified. Intakes of total fat, MUFAs and PUFAs were significantly associated with a lower risk of PD. No associations were found for dietary saturated fat, cholesterol, or trans-fat.Researchers concluded high intake of unsaturated fatty acids, including MUFAs and PUFAs, may protect against Parkinson's disease.
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