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Nutritional Interventions for Dyslipidemia and Cardiovascular Disease Risk

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Cardiovascular disease appears prematurely in persons with SCI. It is the most frequent cause of death among persons surviving more than 30 years following injury and accounts for 45% of all SCI deaths (Devivo et al. 1999). Abnormalities in lipid metabolism develop shortly after injury and tend to progress over time (Bauman et al. 1992; Brenes et al. 1986; Kocina 1997; Szlachcic et al. 2001). Despite the high risk for CVD morbidity and mortality in individuals with SCI, few studies have addressed the benefits of risk reduction interventions aimed at modifiable factors and those that exist have been limited to exercise interventions. This section discusses what is known about the value of nutrition counseling and Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation in improving dyslipidemia in persons with SCI.