The association between nut consumption and the risk of total and ischemic stroke in a German cohort study.Eur J Clin Nutr 2015; 69(4):431-5EJ
Nuts have beneficial effects on coronary heart disease and many cardiovascular risk factors. However, their effect on stroke is less established, and no studies on the topic are available in Northern and Central European populations. Therefore, we aimed at investigating the association between nut consumption and the risk of stroke in a German population.
We used data from a prospective cohort of 26,285 participants of the European Prospective Investigation into the Cancer and Nutrition Potsdam Study. During a median follow-up time of 8.3 years (interquartile range: 7.5-9.2), 288 incident cases of stroke occurred. Nut consumption (standard portion size of 50 g) was assessed at baseline with a semiquantitative food-frequency questionnaire.
The median nut intake was 0.82 g per day, interquartile range: 0.41-4.11. In the multivariable model, an increased risk of stroke was observed among participants who never consumed nuts (hazard ratio (HR): 1.56, 95% confidence interval: 1.17-2.08), compared with those consuming <½ portion/week. However, there was no evidence of a dose-response relationship between nut consumption and stroke. Compared with those who consumed <½ portion/week, the multivariable HR for total stroke was 1.06 (0.75-1.52) among those who consumed ½ to 1 portion/week and 1.37 (0.92-2.05) for those who consumed >1 portion/week. Similar nonsignificant associations were observed in stratified analysis for gender, or for fatal and nonfatal stroke.
We could not observe an association between nut consumption and the risk of developing stroke (fatal/nonfatal) in a population with low habitual nut consumption.