A new study published in Circulation suggests that eating a southern-style diet that is rich in fried food, organ meats, and sugary beverages may increase the risk of coronary heart disease.
Researchers analyzed the dietary habits of more than 17,000 Caucasian and African-American adults aged 45 and up and compared that data to data gathered from the REasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study.
For the study, participants were enrolled between 2003 and 2007. Each participant was screened by telephone before going through a physical exam and completing a questionnaire that outlined their food consumption over the previous year.
Participants were followed up with every six months and were questioned about their current health status. The follow-up period continued for six years.
Based on the types of foods each participant consumed, researchers grouped them into five dietary patterns: convenience, plant-based, sweets, alcohol/salads, and southern/fried foods.
Results indicated that participants who ate foods from the southern dietary pattern increased the risk of a coronary heart disease by 56% compared to those who consumed these types of foods less frequently.
The study’s lead researcher, James M. Shikany, suggests those trying to improve their health and cut coronary heart disease risk “try cutting down the number of times [they] eat fried foods or processed meats from every day to three days a week as a start, and try substituting baked or grilled chicken or vegetable-based foods.”
Sources for Today’s Article:
Shikany, J. M., et al., “Southern dietary pattern is associated with hazard of acute coronary heart disease in the reasons for geographic and racial differences in stroke (REGARDS) study,” Circulation, doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.114.014421, published online August 10, 2015. http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/early/2015/07/29/CIRCULATIONAHA.114.014421
McIntosh, J., “Southern-style diet could increase risk of heart disease,” Medical News Today web site, August 11, 2015; http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/297950.php.