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Pilot observational study to compare heart rate variability in vegans and age-matched omnivore controls – advertisement

‘Advertisement for use for recruitment of volunteers for study ref: BDM/12/13-84, approved by BDM RESC. This project contributes to the College’s role in conducting research, and teaching research methods. You are under no obligation to reply to this email, however if you choose to, participation in this research is voluntary and you may withdraw at any time.’

We would like to invite you to take part in a study to compare heart rate variability (a measure of heart function) between vegans and omnivores. The omega-3 fatty acids (fatty acids are the constituents of fat) are found mainly in fish, where they are derived from marine plants, but also in meat and eggs in small amounts. An intake of these omega-3 fatty acids has been proposed to influence heart rate variability. Since vegans lack omega-3 fatty acids in their diet, this study will investigate whether there are differences in heart rate variability between vegans and omnivores. Your heart function will be assessed by an Actiheart monitor, a chest-worn monitoring device that records heart rate and physical activity in one combined, light-weight, waterproof unit.

If you are healthy, you do not smoke and you are aged between 40 and 70 years then you may be able to help us. We are recruiting vegans and omnivores.

If you are interested in participating, we will need to ask some questions about your health first via telephone or e-mail (5 minutes) and you will need to be available to attend the Metabolic Research Unit of the Diabetes & Nutritional Sciences Division (4th Floor Franklin-Wilkins Building, Waterloo campus, King’s College London) for a clinic visit (approximately 2 hours). We will also ask you to complete a food frequency questionnaire, which includes questions about what you eat. In this visit we will record your height, weight, waist circumference, percentage body fat, blood pressure, and a fasting blood sample (20 ml equivalent to 4 teaspoons). We will then fit the Actiheart monitor and you will be required to wear it for the following 24 hours. During the recording period we will ask you to keep a record of daily activities (exercise, meals or naps). After the clinic visit is completed you will be served a light breakfast.

For further information please contact us to request an information leaflet about the study. The study has been approved by BDM RESC at King’s College London, Reference No. BDM/12/13-84) and recruitment for volunteers will take place from May 2013.

Thank you for your interest.

For further information please contact:
Diabetes & Nutritional Sciences Division
King’s College London, Franklin Wilkins Building
150 Stamford Street, London SE1 9NH
Telephone Number: 020 7848 4162

Responses (4)

  • Report Abuse

    Posted by savetheanimals at 07/02/13 11:57:07

    I am a vegan but, I am only 19 years old so, I guess I can't participate. It also sounds like you have to live in London or at least in the United Kingdom to participate which is another requirement I don't meet. I hate how they think vegans don't get enough nutrition "Since vegans lack omega-3 fatty acids in their diet" Vegans get plenty of omega-3 and all the other nutrients. They also don't put all the bad things in there body like cholesterol. The scientist in this study sound bias before they start but, luckily the results should overcome that and speak for themselves

  • Report Abuse

    Posted by Rarebird at 07/02/13 15:28:38

    What on earth are you folks talking about? Vegans don't lack omega 3 in their diets any more than anyone else. Your ignorance on this topic makes me suspect that this is a scam. Be careful, respondents!

  • DC1346's avatar
    Report Abuse

    Posted by DC1346 at 07/02/13 20:34:26

    I agree with Rarebird.

    As a Culinary Arts instructor who teaches nutrition, I know that omega 3 fatty acids are found in such products as soybean, canola, wheat germ and walnut oil.

    I also find it interesting that while we have been asked to provide personal information regarding names, phone numbers, and email addresses, there is no contact name listed for this college. As someone who has also taught for 23 years, I question why email contact must also be made through a yahoo account instead of a school email address.

    I visited this school on-line and found a listing of faculty. Every single faculty member has a school email account. The address for each faculty member is first name (dot) last name @

    None of these professors use yahoo addresses.

    It is possible, I suppose, that a Ph.D. student may be using a yahoo address as none of the 60 students in question appear to have access to school email accounts ... but the lack of a contact name in this post is a little disturbing.

    Even if this post was written by a Ph.D. candidate as part of a doctoral thesis, one would think that a supervising professor would have caught the erroneous assumption that vegan diets lack omega 3 fatty acids.

    I think Rarebird is right. This smells like a scam. If you give these people your personal contact information, you may be setting yourself up for identity theft.

    I have in the meanwhile, taken the liberty of contacting Dr. Stephen Deery, who is the Dean of this College. Dr. Deery should know whether or not this is a legitimate study ... and if it isn't, he should know that someone may be abusing his school's good name.

  • DC1346's avatar
    Report Abuse

    Posted by DC1346 at 07/03/13 13:28:39

    It's now 1:27 PM in Arizona and 9:27 PM in London. No reply to my email to Dr. Deery has been received.

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