(Note #1: The exceptionally high arginine content of coconut protein
may partly explain the absence of heart disease. Note #2: The exceptionally high satiating effect of tubers may
help account for the absence of obesity.)
Lindeberg S. Berntorp E. Carlsson R. Eliasson M. Marckmann P. Institution
Department of Community Health Sciences, Lund University, Sweaden. Title
Haemostatic variables in Pacific Islanders apparently free from stroke and ischaemic heart disease--the Kitava Study. Source
Thrombosis & Haemostasis. 77(1):94-8, 1997 Jan. Abstract
We cross-sectionally measured plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) activity, fibrinogen, factor VII (FVII:C) and VIII (FVIII:C) coagulant activity, and von Willebrand factor antigen (VWF:Ag) in 162 traditional horticulturalists older than 40 years from the tropical island of Kitava, Papua New Guinea, where the intake of western food is negligible and where stroke and ischaemic heart disease appear to be absent. Identical analyses were made in Swedish subjects of comparable ages. Kitavams had markedly lower PAI-1 activity, with 85% of males and 100% of females having PAI-1 activity < or = 5 U/ml, as compared with 22 and 14% in Swedish males and females (p < 0.0001). Surprisingly, Kitavans also had higher FVII:C. FVIII:C and VWF:Ag. Fibrinogen was 10% lower in Kitavan males while 25% higher in Kitavan females. The very low PAI-1 activity in Kitavans may explain some of their apparent freedom from cardiovascular disease and probably relates to their extreme leanness.
Lindeberg S. Nilsson-Ehle P. Vessby B. Institution
Department of Community Health Sciences, Lund University, Sweden. Title
Lipoprotein composition and serum cholesterol ester fatty acids in nonwesternized Melanesians.
Lipids. 31(2):153-8, 1996 Feb.
In this study, the relationships between dietary fat [as measured by serum cholesterol ester fatty acids (CE-FA)], age, smoking, body mass index, and serum lipids were analyzed in 151 subsistence horticulturalists, aged 20-86 yr, from Kitava, Trobriand Islands, Papua New Guinea. Their diet consists of tubers, fruit, coconut, fish, and vegetables with a negligible influence of western food and alcohol. Total fat intake is low [21% of energy (en%)], while saturated fat intake from coconuts is high (17 en%, mainly lauric and myristic acid). In multivariate analysis, 11-43% of the variation of the serum lipoprotein composition was explained by CE-FA, age, and smoking habits. The proportion of CE20:5n-3 explained much of the variation of triglycerides (TG, negative relation) and high density lipoprotein-cholesterol (HDL-C, positive) in both sexes and serum apolipoprotein A1 (ApoA1, positive) in the males. CE16:0 was positively related to TG and negatively related to HDL-C and ApoA1 in both sexes, and in males it related negatively to total cholesterol (TC) and low density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C). In males, negative relationships were present between CE18:2n-6 and TC and between CE14:0 and serum lipoprotein(a). Smoking was independently associated with lower ApoA1 in both sexes and with
Lindeberg S. Lundh B.
Primary Health Care Centre, Sjobo, Sweden. Title
Apparent absence of stroke and ischaemic heart disease in a traditional Melanesian island: a clinical study in Kitava. Source
Journal of Internal Medicine. 233(3):269-75, 1993 Mar. Abstract
On the island of Kitava, Trobriand Islands, Papua New Guinea, a subsistence lifestyle, uninfluenced by western dietary habits, is still maintained. Tubers, fruit, fish and coconut are dietary staples. Of the total population, 1816 subjects were estimated to be older than 3 years and 125 to be 60-96 years old. The frequencies of spontaneous sudden death, exertion-related chest pain, hemiparesis, aphasia and sudden imbalance were assessed by semi-structured interviews in 213 adults aged 20-96. Resting electrocardiograms (ECG's) were recorded in 119 males and 52 females. No case corresponding to stroke, sudden death or angina pectoris was described by the interviewed subjects. Minnesota Code (MC) items 1-5 occurred in 14 ECG's with no significant relation to age, gender or smoking. ST items (MC 4.2 and 4.3) were found in two females and Q items (MC 1.1.2, 1.3.2 and 1.3.3) in three males. Stroke and ischaemic heart disease appear to be absent in this population.