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Media availability: low-fat dietary pattern may lower risk of ovarian cancer
Date:10/9/2007

A diet low in fat could reduce the risk of ovarian cancer in healthy postmenopausal women, according to new results from the Womens Health Initiative (WHI) Dietary Modification Trial. Researchers found that after four years, women who decreased the amount of dietary fat they consumed were 40 percent less likely to develop ovarian cancer than women who followed normal dietary patterns. As expected, no effect was found during the first four years because preventive benefits on cancer often take many years to develop. Ovarian cancer affects about 1 in 60 U.S. women in their lifetimes and has the highest mortality of all cancers of the female reproductive system.

"Low-Fat Dietary Pattern and Invasive Cancer Incidence: Further Results from the Womens Health Initiative Dietary Modification Trial," is published online October 9 by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The WHI Dietary Modification Trial was conducted in 40 clinical centers throughout the United States and is funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health.

The WHI Dietary Modification clinical trial followed 48,835 healthy, postmenopausal women for an average of 8.1 years to test whether a low-fat diet would reduce the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Nearly 20,000 women in the intervention group were counseled to decrease fat intake to 20 percent of calories and to replace calories from fat with calories from vegetables, fruits, and grains. The control group (nearly 30,000 women) received diet-related education materials only.

Women in both groups started with average consumption of more than 35 percent of calories from fat when they joined the study. By the end of the first year, the low-fat diet group reduced average total fat intakes to 24 percent of calories from fat, about 11 percent less than the women in the usual diet group. By the end of the study, women in the low-fat diet group averaged 29 pe
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Contact: NHLBI Communications Office
NHLBI_news@nhlbi.nih.gov
301-496-4236
NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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