Adding a vitamin C pill to your diet may be a good way of preventing heart disease, new research from Boston suggests.
Vitamin C has certain properties that, in theory, could protect the heart from damage. Still, studies examining the effects of vitamin C have not consistently shown that it offers any benefits for the heart.
The new findings, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, are based on a study of 85,118 women. At the beginning of the study, the women were surveyed about vitamin use and the foods they ate. They were then followed for 16 years to see if they developed heart problems.
After taking into account the women's age, whether they smoked, and other factors, the researchers found that the risk of heart disease dropped as vitamin C intake increased. Women who used vitamin C pills were 28% less likely to develop heart disease than women who didn't.
However, there appeared to be little benefit from consuming foods rich in vitamin C without also using supplements, the researchers pointed out. When vitamin C supplements were not used, the amount of vitamin C consumed in foods had little effect on whether heart disease occurred.
The results suggest that use of vitamin C supplements may protect against heart disease. However, it may be that vitamin C pills are not actually beneficial, but rather people who choose to use such pills may simply represent a healthier segment of the population.
All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.