New study finds no link between high intake of refined grain foods and risk of cardiovascular disease

Analysis of data from 17 studies shows that refined grain foods are not to blame for cardiovascular disease

WASHINGTON, September 29, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — A new study recently published Trends in Cardiovascular Medicine reveals that high consumption of refined grain foods does not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), coronary heart disease, heart attack, heart failure or stroke. The study also calls for reflection on the Western dietary pattern and its consideration in future dietary recommendations. Although refined grains are included as a component of the Western dietary pattern, the results of the meta-analyses suggest that refined grains do not contribute to the increased risk of CVD associated with this unhealthy eating pattern.

The study demonstrated the lack of association between refined grain intake and CVD risk in meta-analyses of 17 prospective studies (including 877,462 participants) that restricted analyzes to basic grains only (eg, for meta-analyses of studies that included staple foods and indulgent grains (eg, cakes, cookies, donuts, brownies, muffins, candy).

“These new results challenge the widely held view that foods refined with grains are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Glenn Gaesser, a professor at Arizona State University’s College of Health Solutions and author of the new study. . “Refined grains are typically included in the Western dietary pattern, which also includes red and processed meat, sugar-sweetened beverages, potato chips, and high-fat dairy. Research shows that these foods, especially red and processed meat, and sugar-sweetened beverages , which are the real culprits in this dietary pattern. Meta-analyses in the new study indicate that the greatest risk of CVD associated with this dietary pattern is not from refined grain foods.”

Refined grains are grains that have been ground, a process that removes the bran and germ to extend the life of the grain. This process removes some of the original fiber and B vitamins from foods, but they are often enriched with additional B vitamins and iron.

This study follows a recent commentary by Gaesser published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings that examined data from existing published studies to reveal no link between type 2 diabetes and consumption of refined grains.

“It is my hope that these new results will be considered in formulating future dietary guidelines for Americans,” added Gaesser. “I think it’s important that the nutrition community recognizes these results, and while it still rightly promotes increased consumption of whole foods, it doesn’t have to come at the expense of refined foods. Healthy diet.”

The new study published in Trends in Cardiovascular Medicine can be found here. The manuscript preparation for this study was supported in part by a grant from the Grain Foods Foundation.

For more information on the survey results and to learn more about the role of grain foods in a healthy diet, visit

About the Grain Foods Foundation

Formed in 2004, the Grain Foods Foundation (GFF) is a group of thought leaders and advocates for all grain foods and believes that everyone needs grain foods to enjoy a happy, healthy life. Committed to nutrition education programming firmly rooted in science, GFF is a strong advocate for our members and a resource for consumers and media who want to learn more about the role of grains in a well-balanced dietary pattern. GFF delivers research-based information and resources to members, partners, influencers, policymakers and consumers through a broad communications campaign, conferences, webinars, research tools, social media and more. GFF is committed to bringing factual and common sense information to the consumer. For more information, visit

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SOURCE The Grain Foods Foundation

New study finds no link between high intake of refined grain foods and risk of cardiovascular disease

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