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Evaluation of relative intake of fatty acids according to the Northern Sweden FFQ with fatty acid levels in erythrocyte membranes as biomarkers
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Odontology. Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Nutritional Research.
2009 (English)In: Public Health Nutrition, ISSN 1368-9800, E-ISSN 1475-2727, 1-8 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the validity of the Northern Sweden eighty-four-item FFQ to estimate intake of fatty acids relative to 24 h diet recalls (24-HDR) and fatty acids in erythrocyte membranes.

DESIGN: Participants, randomly recruited from the population-based Västerbotten Intervention Project, answered the eighty-four-item FFQ. During the following year each participant carried out ten 24-HDR. Intake of fatty acids measured by the FFQ was compared with intake by the 24-HDR and fatty acid levels in erythrocytes.

SETTING: The county of Västerbotten in northern Sweden.

SUBJECTS: Ninety-six men and ninety-nine women.

RESULTS: Spearman correlation coefficients (rs) between intakes of the fatty acids 14 : 0, 15 : 0, 16 : 0, 17 : 0, 18 : 2n-6, 18 : 3n-3, 20 : 5n-3 and 22 : 6n-3 estimated by the FFQ and the 24-HDR were all significant and ranged from 0.29 (22 : 6n-3 in men and women) to 0.60 (16 : 0 in men), whereas significant correlations between FFQ-estimated intake and erythrocyte membrane content were only seen for milk fatty acids 14 : 0, 15 : 0 and 17 : 0 (rs = 0.23-0.34) and fish fatty acids 20 : 5n-3 and 22 : 6n-3 (rs = 0.42-0.51).

CONCLUSION: The Northern Sweden eighty-four-item FFQ gives a satisfactory estimate of the intake of fish fatty acids (20 : 5n-3 and 22 : 6n-3) and milk fatty acids (15 : 0 and 17 : 0), whereas its validity for fatty acids 18 : 2n-6 and 18 : 3n-3, derived mainly from vegetable oils, cannot be shown.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. 1-8 p.
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public health
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-18499DOI: 10.1017/S1368980008004503PubMedID: 19144238OAI: diva2:160027
Available from: 2009-02-11 Created: 2009-02-11 Last updated: 2011-03-15Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Biomarkers of fish consumption and risk of stroke or myocardial infarction
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Biomarkers of fish consumption and risk of stroke or myocardial infarction
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The effect of fish consumption on the risk of cardiovascular disease has been extensively studied. Omega-3 fatty acids present in fish, namely eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), have been found to have beneficial effects through several mechanisms. In addition, selenium, an antioxidant, may be protective. Fish also represents the main human exposure source to the pollutant methylmercury (MeHg), which is associated with elevated cardiovascular risk in previous studies. The aim of this thesis was to evaluate whether MeHg is associated with the risk of myocardial infarction (MI) or stroke, whether EPA+DHA or selenium (Se) have protective associations, and if the overall association between fish consumption and risk of stroke or MI is detrimental or protective.

A prospective incident case-control study design was used to study effects on stroke or MI. Three hundred and sixty-nine cases with twice as many matched controls were included in the study on stroke, while 431 cases with 499 controls participated in the MI study, all from the Northern Sweden Health and Disease Study. The data was collected from health examinations of the population from 1986 until 1999. Also, time trends in burdens of mercury (Hg), lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) in erythrocytes (Ery) from 1990 to 1999 were examined. The food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) used in the case-control studies was correlated with measurements of fatty acids in erythrocyte membranes as biomarkers of intake.

In this northern Swedish population, levels of Ery-Hg and Ery-Pb decreased during the 1990´s, but Ery-Cd decreased only in smoking men. No significant associations were found between Ery-Hg or levels of EPA+DHA and the risk of stroke. Men reporting fish consumption >3 meals/week had an elevated risk of stroke. In the MI study, higher levels of Ery-Hg were associated with lower risk of MI. No clear associations were found for reported fish consumption, levels of EPA+DHA or Ery-Se. The validated FFQ has a fair reliability in estimating intake of fatty acids EPA and DHA. However, the low variation in fish consumption in the general population in combination with different versions of the FFQ (with pre-defined, multiple choice alternatives) decreased the reliability of self-reported fish consumption in the case-control studies on risk of stroke or MI.

In conclusion, MeHg has no harmful association regarding the risk of stroke or MI in this population with generally low exposure levels. The protective association regarding risk of MI is probably due to Ery-Hg being a biomarker for consumption of fish, a source of other beneficial nutrients. Thus, in this population the benefits of the nutrients in fish appear to overcome the potential harm of MeHg.

The finding of elevated stroke risk related to high fish consumption in men will be investigated further.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå university, 2010. 46 p.
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1356
fish consumption, omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid, docosahexaenoic acid, methylmercury, selenium, lead, cadmium, stroke, myocardial infarction, erythrocytes, food frequency questionnaire
National Category
Environmental Health and Occupational Health
Research subject
Epidemiology; hälso- och sjukvårdsforskning; Medicine; biology, Environmental Science; Nutrition
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-33906 (URN)978-91-7459-008-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-06-04, FORUM-salen, Campus Skeria, Skellefteå, 13:00 (Swedish)
PHIME; Public health impact of long-term, low-level mixed element exposure in susceptible population strata
Available from: 2010-05-21 Created: 2010-05-10 Last updated: 2010-05-21Bibliographically approved

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Wennberg, MariaJohansson, Ingegerd
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