Diet as a risk factor for peripheral arterial disease in the general population: the Edinburgh Artery Study
The aim of this study with 1592 British men and women age 55 to 74 was to examine the relationship between an indicator of peripheral arterial disease and dietary factors As an indicator the ankle-brachial-pressure-index (ABPI) was used. A higher ABPI indicates a lower risk to develop peripheral arterial diseases. It was found that fiber-containing foods, vitamin E and vitamin C were associated with a higher ABPI, thus indicating a lower risk of peripheral arterial disease. Further details can be found in the study.
Peripheral vascular diseases (PVD) are obstructions of the blood flow in peripheral blood vessels, most commonly the legs or arms. Since this disease almost exclusively develops in arteries, not in veins, it is also called peripheral arterial disease (PAD). As in coronary artery disease and cerebrovascular disease, the underlying disease process is arteriosclerosis. The disease process starts with a weakening of the blood vessel walls, most frequently caused by an insufficient dietary intake of micronutrients. This leads to an underproduction of collagen and other reinforcement molecules in the artery walls and to the initiation of a repair process to compensate for the growing instability of these walls. The arteriosclerotic plaques that eventually narrow the blood flow in the legs, arms or other peripheral body parts can lead to severe tissue damage and – if untreated – to tissue death (gangrene) and amputation.
Donnan PT, Thomson M, Fowkes FG, Prescott RJ, Housley E. Diet as a risk factor for peripheral arterial disease in the general population: the Edinburgh Artery Study. Am J Clin Nutr. 1993 Jun;57(6):917-21.