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Nutrition and Heart Disease

Entering the 1980’s, coronary heart disease (CHD) still remains the major cause of death in the United States and ranks second in the world in terms of CHD mortality rates. However, CHD mortality and morbidity rates in the United States have declined significantly since the 1950’s. There are many reasons for this positive and encouraging change, one of which is the increasing awareness of the importance of the role of nutrition in health and disease. Diet has been identified as an important factor contributing to hyperlipidemia in individuals and populations. Dietary modification has become a routine means of treating patients with lipid disorders. The relationship between diet and chronic disease is, however, far from simple and at the present time, needs further intensive research. Many significant advances have recently taken place in our understanding of the effect of different nutritional components on blood lipids and lipopro teins and on the initiation progression and regression of atherosclerotic proces ses. This symposium (The 19th annual meeting of the American College of Nutrition: Cardiovascular Disease and Nutrition held at Bloomington, Minn. on June 1-2, 1978) addressed many of the important questions concerning the association of diet and CRD. We have not restricted the topic to hyperlipi demia and CHD, per se but have considered cardiovascular disease in general. This monograph should be of interest to the dietitian, nutritionist, pediatric clinician, cardiologist, physicians in general, and researchers in the field of cardiovascular disease. Herbert K. Naito, Ph.D.

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