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June 19, 1996

Family Medicine

Author Affiliations

Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC; University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor

JAMA. 1996;275(23):1809-1810. doi:10.1001/jama.1996.03530470037022

The breadth of family medicine precludes a complete review of the many studies that could influence practice, but particularly important developments have occurred in clinical prevention, care of patients with heart disease and diabetes, and women's health care.

Several nutrition study findings bolster the family physician's prevention and educational roles. The substitution of soy protein for animal protein was shown to lower total cholesterol level by about 9%.1 The amount of soy consumed in this study would be highly unusual in the United States and would take a considerable adjustment in diet. Consistent with the soy findings, the intake of saturated fat explained 73% of the variance in the incidence of coronary heart disease in different countries, with dietary flavonoid intake explaining an additional 8%, almost as much as the 9% explained by cigarette smoking.2 Flavonoids are found in many fruits and vegetables, with particularly high content in