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Pennella S. 1.2, Rosi C. 3, Pedrazzi P. 1, Alberto Farinetti 4, Anna Vittoria Mattioli 1.2 1 Dipartimento di Scienze Biomediche. Università degli Studi di Modena e RE. 2 Istituto Nazionale Ricerche Cardiovascolari. U.O. Modena. 3 Ospedale di Castelfranco U.O. Cardiologia Riabilitativa. 4 Dipartimento di Scienze Mediche e Chirurgiche Materno-Infantili e dell’Adulto. Università degli Studi di Modena e RE. E-mail: [email protected]

Background. It is well known that there are some gender-related differences in adherence to healthy diet; i.e. Mediterranean Diet (MedD) [1].

The aim of the study was to explore gender differences among diet and antioxidants intake in patients (pts) with a first detected episode of atrial fibrillation (AF) and the effect of diet on recurrences.

Methods. A group of 400 pts, 205 men and 195 women was investigated. A control group of 400 subjects, age and sex matched, was selected and compared.

Nutritional parameters were assessed by a self-administered food frequency validated questionnaire (116 items) completed by an interviewer-administered 24 h diet recall.

The MedD adherence score was based on a prior scoring system developed for Greek populations. Consumption of cereals, vegetables, legumes, fruit, fish, dairy products, espresso coffee, chocolate, snacks, soda drink, wine and tea was investigated.

We compared women with AF (WAF) and men with AF (MAF). Results. The MedD Score was lower in pts with AF compared to control (27.9 ± 5.6 vs 22.3 ± 3.1; p<0.001).

MedD Score was higher in WAF compared to MAF (24.3 ± 2.0 vs 19.1 ± 2.2; p<0.001). Coffee consumption was higher in MAF whereas WAF were more likely to be tea consumers.

The intake of coffee contributed for 60% (MFA) and 34% (WFA) of the total antioxidant intake, and WFA had higher intake of antioxidants from fruit and vegetables (see table) WFA also had a lower intake of snacks containing caffeine[2][3].

Low level of antioxidants was associated with an increasing risk of AF recurrences (O.R. 2.1; 95%CI 1.55-3.14; P<0.01).

Table: Comparison between source of antioxidant Sorces of antioxidants Legumes Vegetables Fruits Coffee Tea

Conclusions. WFA showed high adherence to MedD and higher intake of antioxidant form fruit and vegetables. MFA had higher intake of antioxidants from coffee. Women that developed recurrences of AF were older, with lower adherence to MedD, and had higher intake of caffeine.

[1] Mattioli AV, Miloro C, Pennella S, Pedrazzi P, Farinetti A. Adherence to Mediterranean diet and intake of antioxidants influence spontaneous conversion of atrial fibrillation. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2013 Feb;23(2):115-21. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2011.03.005. Epub 2011 Jul 27.

[2] Klatsky AL, Hasan AS, Armstrong MA, Udaltsova N, Morton C. Coffee, caffeine, and risk of hospitalization for arrhythmias. Perm J. 2011 Summer;15(3):19-25.

[3] Conen D, Chiuve SE, Everett BM, Zhang SM, Buring JE, Albert CMCaffeine consumption and incident atrial fibrillation in women. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Sep;92(3):509-14. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.2010.29627. Epub 2010 Jun 23.