Article Text

Dietary predictors of early-onset ischaemic heart disease in a sample drawn from a Pakistani population
  1. Rafia Rafique,
  2. Naumana Amjad
  1. Department of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan
  1. Correspondence to Rafia Rafique, Department of Applied Psychology, University of the Punjab, New Campus, Lahore 54000, Pakistan; rafiawaqar{at}


Objective A relationship between dietary pattern and ischaemic heart disease (IHD) has long been established through empirical research. It is well documented that an unhealthy diet—rich in animal products (eggs and meat), salt, fried and salty food, ghee and butter and low in fruit, vegetables and fish—is associated with a risk of IHD. However, limited empirical evidence exists from studies conducted in Pakistan, so this study was designed to explore the association of dietary pattern with risk of IHD in this country.

Design Case–control study.

Setting 190 cases with a diagnosis of first onset of angina and myocardial infarction and 380 age- and gender-matched community controls were recruited from five major hospitals in the city of Lahore, Pakistan.

Method A Food Frequency Questionnaire was used to gather information on dietary patterns from the study sample (age 35–55), who provided written consent to participate.

Results Binary logistic regression analysis revealed that eggs, sweets, butter, desi ghee, desserts and beef were significant risk factors for IHD, and fish and fruit were significant protective dietary predictors of IHD.

Conclusions 50–73% of variance in IHD due to dietary pattern can be predicted with 91.8% accuracy within the study sample. The study lays ground for future research, as well as providing help in planning preventive dietary strategies to counter the escalating burden of IHD in Pakistan.

  • Coronary Artery Disease

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