HealthDay News — Intensive diet and exercise modifications are associated with a decrease in atherosclerotic burden in coronary arteries, results of a review published in The American Journal of Cardiology indicate.

To determine the effectiveness of diet and exercise in decreasing coronary and carotid atherosclerotic burden, Sunny Jhamnani, MD, of the Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., and colleagues conducted a meta-analysis of data for 1,344 lesions from 14 randomized, controlled trials.

Overall, modifications in lifestyle with diet and exercise were associated with a decrease in the burden of coronary atherosclerosis of -0.34% stenosis for standardized mean difference (SMD), with no significant publication bias and heterogeneity (P=0.21; I2= 28.25).

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A similar decrease was observed in the burden of carotid atherosclerosis, with a decrease in carotid intimal-medial thickness in millimeters by -0.21 and -0.13 for SMD before and after accounting for publication bias and heterogeneity (P=0.13; I2=39.91; P=0.54; I2=0), respectively.

“These analyses demonstrate that lifestyle modifications can affect two different vasculature systems, that is, coronary and carotid, similarly,” concluded the investigators.


  1. Jhamnani S et al. The American Journal of Cardiology. 2015; doi: