Dec. 21, 2009 Including fish in a balanced diet has long been associated with the prevention of heart disease, and scientists now believe that it can help preserve heart function in patients who have experienced heart failure. A new study in the Journal of Food Science reports that moderate fish consumption can help reduce the risk of left ventricular systolic dysfunction (LVSD) in post acute coronary syndrome (ACS) patients.
Researchers from the University of Athens in Greece focused on demographical, nutritional, lifestyle, and medical factors combined with the risk of developing left ventricular dysfunction after nonfatal heart failure. The study included nearly one thousand patients who were hospitalized after ACS. At the study's conclusion, researchers noted that consuming fish one to two times per week was independently associated with a considerable reduction of the odds of developing LVSD. However, a higher consumption of fish did not result in further protection from the occurrence of LVSD.
Lead researcher Dr. D. Panagiotakos states, "More research is necessary in this area, including the determination of the type of fish consumed as well as the type of the cooking method (boiling, baking, frying." The authors cite a study that determined consumption of a wide variety of fish is best for minimizing mercury exposure and increasing omega-3 fatty acid intake.
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