Hundreds of vitamin-E trials deemed meaningless

The dosages in most past trials shown to be far too low

International Decades of vitamin-E studies have turned in misleading conclusions after research found levels of vitamin E required by the body to reduce oxidative stress were much higher than previously thought, and therefore much higher than the dosages employed in the majority of clinical trials.

The study and commentary in Free Radical Biology and Medicine found 1,600-3,200IU of vitamin E was required daily to reduce oxidative stress.

This could help explain the inconsistent results of many vitamin-E trials, said study co-author Balz Frei, professor and director of the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University. "The methodology used in almost all past clinical trials of vitamin E has been fatally flawed," Frei said. "These trials supposedly addressed the hypothesis that reducing oxidative stress could reduce cardiovascular disease. But oxidative stress was never measured in these trials, and therefore we don't know whether it was actually reduced or not. What's now clear is that the amount of vitamin E that can conclusively be shown to reduce oxidative stress is higher."

As Jeffrey Bloomberg, PhD, pointed out in his commentary, "The results suggest the paradox of vitamin E in CVD might be resolved by studies initiated at earlier ages, of longer durations, and using higher doses and more bioavailable forms of alpha-tocopherol."

David Cai, PhD, senior scientist at Cognis Nutrition & Health, noted that "the benefits of vitamin E on CVD are warranted, and new findings are still yet to be explored."

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