Intake of Different Dietary Proteins and Risk of Heart Failure in Men



 Animal and plant protein intakes have indicated opposite associations with cardiovascular mortality risk. Whether dietary proteins are associated with risk of heart failure (HF) is unclear. Thus, we examined the associations of proteins from different food sources with risk of HF.

Methods and Results 

The study included 2441 men aged 42 to 60 years at the baseline examinations in 1984 to 1989 in the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study. Protein intakes at baseline were assessed with 4-day dietary records. Data on incident HF cases were obtained from national registers. HF risk according to protein intake was estimated by Cox proportional hazard ratios. During the mean follow-up of 22.2 years, 334 incident HF cases occurred. Higher intake of total protein indicated a trend toward increased risk of HF (multivariable-adjusted hazard ratio in the highest versus lowest quartile=1.33; 95% confidence interval: 0.95–1.85; P-trend=0.05). The associations between specific types and sources of protein with incident HF were consistent with this overall finding although not all associations reached statistical significance. For example, the hazard ratio in the highest versus lowest quartile was 1.43 (95% confidence interval: 1.00–2.03; P-trend=0.07) for total animal protein and 1.17 (95% confidence interval: 0.72–1.91; P-trend=0.35) for total plant protein.


In middle-aged men, higher protein intake was marginally associated with increased risk of HF.


Heli E.K. Virtanen, Sari Voutilainen, Timo T. Koskinen, Jaakko Mursu, Tomi-Pekka Tuomainen, Jyrki K. Virtanen (2018) Intake of Different Dietary Proteins and Risk of Heart Failure in Men. Circulation: Heart Failure Journal. DOI:

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