The objective of this Executive Summary is to provide a synopsis of the research findings presented at the American Heart Association conference “Dietary Fatty Acids and Cardiovascular Health—Dietary Recommendations for Fatty Acids: Is There Ample Evidence?” held on June 5–6, 2000, in Reston, Va. The conference was held to summarize the current understanding of the effects of fatty acids on risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer, as well as to identify gaps in our knowledge base that need to be addressed. There is great interest in learning more about the biological effects of the individual fatty acids, their role in chronic disease risk, and their underlying mechanisms of action. As research advances are made, there is always the need to question how new findings may be translated into practice. There is a long history of research providing the basis for the modification of existing dietary guidelines. Research findings have been used to verify intake criteria and are considered along with practical issues of implementation to establish new guidelines. A substantive body of consistent evidence sufficient to defend a dietary recommendation or a change in existing dietary guidance is essential. The conference highlighted the progress that has been made in understanding the biological effects of fatty acids and also addressed the need to learn more about how different fatty acids affect the risk of chronic disease, within the context of refining dietary guidance to further enhance health.