Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Quit smoking? Vitamin E may give extra boost to heart health

Date:
April 23, 2013
Source:
Ohio State University
Summary:
Taking a specific form of a vitamin E supplement can accelerate the health benefits that occur when people quit smoking, new research suggests.

Taking a specific form of a vitamin E supplement can accelerate the health benefits that occur when people quit smoking, new research suggests.

Related Articles


In the small study, improvement in blood vessel function associated with the added vitamin E potentially translates into an estimated 19 percent greater drop in future risk for cardiovascular disease.

Smokers were recruited to participate in a study to quit smoking for seven days, with blood markers of inflammation and blood vessel function measured before and after the trial. After seven days of not smoking, participants saw an increase in their vascular function by an average of 2.8 percent. Those who quit smoking and also took the gamma-tocopherol form of vitamin E showed a 1.5 percent additional improvement in vascular function.

While these changes in vascular function may appear to be small, previous large-scale studies suggest that every 1 percent increase in vascular function -- or improvement in the blood vessel's ability to dilate -- translates into a 13 percent drop in risk of developing heart disease later in life.

"This is a very short-term study that shows very promising effects," said Richard Bruno, associate professor of human nutrition at The Ohio State University and senior author of the study.

"The underlying rationale is that we know it takes many years before the risk for cardiovascular disease of a former smoker matches that of a nonsmoker. We hope to develop a therapy to combine with smoking cessation that could accelerate the restoration of vascular function and reduce cardiovascular risk."

The research was presented Tuesday (4/23) at the annual Experimental Biology meeting in Boston.

The supplement in the study is not the same as the average vitamin E available on most store shelves. Vitamin E occurs in eight forms based on their chemical structure, and the most well-known form belongs to a variety called tocopherols. In this study, researchers tested the effects of the gamma-tocopherol form. The most common form of vitamin E, and the one for which humans have a dietary requirement, is alpha-tocopherol.

Though taking gamma-tocopherol is safe, Bruno noted that longer-term studies with more participants would be required to nail down specific dietary recommendations related to smoking cessation.

A total of 30 smokers in their 20s who had smoked at least half a pack per day for a year participated in the study. All participants stopped smoking, and 16 received 500 milligrams daily of gamma-tocopherol while 14 received a placebo.

In addition to taking blood samples, researchers measured vascular function by obtaining ultrasound images of an artery in the upper arm as the vessel responded to a surge of blood flow after circulation in the arm was stopped for five minutes.

The quality of vascular function is defined by the artery's ability to dilate in response to the surge of blood -- more dilation suggests the vessel has appropriate responses to changes in blood flow.

"Greater dilatory response is an indicator of vascular health. People with a long history of smoking tend to have low vasodilatory responses," Bruno said.

Participants who took the supplements showed greater improvements in vascular function and also had lower levels of two inflammation-related proteins in their blood than did participants who received a placebo.

Bruno said the lower levels of those two proteins in the supplemented participants' blood suggest that the gamma-tocopherol form of vitamin E restores vascular function at least in part by lowering inflammation.

Gamma-tocopherol is abundant in the American diet, but is difficult to obtain from low-calorie sources. Food sources include soybean, canola and some other vegetable oils, and certain nuts such as pistachios, pecans, cashews and peanuts. Supplements that are rich in gamma-tocopherol can be found in specialty stores.

This work was conducted when Bruno was on the faculty at the University of Connecticut, and was funded by a grant from the Connecticut Department of Public Health.

Co-author Eunice Mah, a postdoctoral researcher in Bruno's lab at Ohio State, presented the research at the meeting. Additional co-authors are Yi Guo, a graduate research associate at Ohio State, and Kevin Ballard, Ruisong Pei and co-principal investigator Jeff Volek of the University of Connecticut.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Ohio State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Ohio State University. "Quit smoking? Vitamin E may give extra boost to heart health." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 April 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423090802.htm>.
Ohio State University. (2013, April 23). Quit smoking? Vitamin E may give extra boost to heart health. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 4, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423090802.htm
Ohio State University. "Quit smoking? Vitamin E may give extra boost to heart health." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423090802.htm (accessed March 4, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Adults Only Get The Flu Twice A Decade, Researchers Say

Newsy (Mar. 4, 2015) Researchers found adults only get the flu about once every five years. Scientists analyzed how a person&apos;s immunity builds up over time as well. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mount Everest Has a Poop Problem

Mount Everest Has a Poop Problem

Buzz60 (Mar. 4, 2015) With no bathrooms to use, climbers of Mount Everest have been leaving human waste on the mountain for years, and it&apos;s becoming a health issue. Mike Janela (@mikejanela) has more. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Tips to 'Skinny' Your Home

The Best Tips to 'Skinny' Your Home

Buzz60 (Mar. 4, 2015) If you&apos;re looking to reach your health goals this season, there are a few simple tips to help you spring clean your space and improve your nutrition. Krystin Goodwin (@krystingoodwin) has the skinny on keeping a healthy home. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Analysis: Supreme Court Hears ACA Challenge

Analysis: Supreme Court Hears ACA Challenge

AP (Mar. 4, 2015) Associated Press legal reporter Mark Sherman breaks down the details of the latest Affordable Care Act challenge to make it to the Supreme Court. (March 4) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins