Micha R; Penalvo JL; Cudhea F; Imamura F; Rehm CD; Mozaffarian D. - - JAMA 2017; 317: 912-24.

Association Between Dietary Factors and Mortality From Heart Disease, Stroke, and Type 2 Diabetes in the United States

Importance: In the United States, national associations of individual dietary factors with specific cardiometabolic diseases are not well established. Objective: To estimate associations of intake of 10 specific dietary factors with mortality due to heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes (cardiometabolic mortality) among US adults. Design, Setting, and Participants: A comparative risk assessment model incorporated data and corresponding uncertainty on population demographics and dietary habits from National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (1999-2002: n = 8104; 2009-2012: n = 8516); estimated associations of diet and disease from meta-analyses of prospective studies and clinical trials with validity analyses to assess potential bias; and estimated disease-specific national mortality from the National Center for Health Statistics. Exposures: Consumption of 10 foods/nutrients associated with cardiometabolic diseases: fruits, vegetables, nuts/seeds, whole grains, unprocessed red meats, processed meats, sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs), polyunsaturated fats, seafood omega-3 fats, and sodium. Main Outcomes and Measures: Estimated absolute and percentage mortality due to heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes in 2012. Disease-specific and demographic-specific (age, sex, race, and education) mortality and trends between 2002 and 2012 were also evaluated. Results: In 2012, 702308 cardiometabolic deaths occurred in US adults, including 506100 from heart disease (371266 coronary heart disease, 35019 hypertensive heart disease, and 99815 other cardiovascular disease), 128294 from stroke (16125 ischemic, 32591 hemorrhagic, and 79578 other), and 67914 from type 2 diabetes. Of these, an estimated 318656 (95% uncertainty interval [UI], 306064-329755; 45.4%) cardiometabolic deaths per year were associated with suboptimal intakes-48.6% (95% UI, 46.2%-50.9%) of cardiometabolic deaths in men and 41.8% (95% UI, 39.3%-44.2%) in women; 64.2% (95% UI, 60.6%-67.9%) at younger ages (25-34 years) and 35.7% (95% UI, 33.1%-38.1%) at older ages (>/=75 years); 53.1% (95% UI, 51.6%-54.8%) among blacks, 50.0% (95% UI, 48.2%-51.8%) among Hispanics, and 42.8% (95% UI, 40.9%-44.5%) among whites; and 46.8% (95% UI, 44.9%-48.7%) among lower-, 45.7% (95% UI, 44.2%-47.4%) among medium-, and 39.1% (95% UI, 37.2%-41.2%) among higher-educated individuals. The largest numbers of estimated diet-related cardiometabolic deaths were related to high sodium (66508 deaths in 2012; 9.5% of all cardiometabolic deaths), low nuts/seeds (59374; 8.5%), high processed meats (57766; 8.2%), low seafood omega-3 fats (54626; 7.8%), low vegetables (53410; 7.6%), low fruits (52547; 7.5%), and high SSBs (51694; 7.4%). Between 2002 and 2012, population-adjusted US cardiometabolic deaths per year decreased by 26.5%. The greatest decline was associated with insufficient polyunsaturated fats (-20.8% relative change [95% UI, -18.5% to -22.8%]), nuts/seeds (-18.0% [95% UI, -14.6% to -21.0%]), and excess SSBs (-14.5% [95% UI, -12.0% to -16.9%]). The greatest increase was associated with unprocessed red meats (+14.4% [95% UI, 9.1%-19.5%]). Conclusions and Relevance: Dietary factors were estimated to be associated with a substantial proportion of deaths from heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. These results should help identify priorities, guide public health planning, and inform strategies to alter dietary habits and improve health.