Alpha-linolenic acid: A promising nutraceutical for the prevention of stroke

Abstract : Stroke is a worldwide main cause of mortality and morbidity. Most of the preventive and neuroprotective treatments identified in preclinical studies failed in clinical trials. Although there is a consensus that nutrition is important for health, its role is underestimated in stroke. Indeed an increase consumption of salt and fatty foods may promote hypertension and obesity, which are well known risk factors of stroke. In contrast it is more difficult to identify a risk factor arising from a deficiency in an essential nutrient in the diet. Western modern diets are deficient in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are essential for brain health. Such deficiency may constitute by itself a risk factor for stroke. Furthermore, an imbalance in the consumption of omega-6 and omega-3 progressively took place in the past 40 years leading to omega-6/omega-3 ratios that are far above the WHO healthy recommendations. A consequence of this imbalanced ratio has been the fostering of elevations in and increased prevalence of inflammatory cardiovascular diseases and obesity. In this context, this review outlines a promising therapeutic opportunity by integrating a nutritional-based approach focusing on omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid as nutraceutical to prevent the devastating damage caused by brain ischemia.
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Carine Nguemeni, Elsa Gouix, Miled Bourourou, Catherine Heurteaux, Nicolas Blondeau. Alpha-linolenic acid: A promising nutraceutical for the prevention of stroke. PharmaNutrition, Elsevier, 2013, 1 (1), pp.1-8. ⟨10.1016/j.phanu.2012.12.002⟩. ⟨hal-02266098⟩

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