Vitamin E may help prevent Lou Gehrig's disease

January 26, 2005 in Nutrition Topics in the News, Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements

Vitamin E may help prevent Lou Gehrig's disease

Vitamin E supplements may play a role in preventing amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the slowly paralyzing condition commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease, new research shows.

Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health, Boston compared the risk of ALS in individuals who regularly took the antioxidant vitamins E and C with people who did not take these vitamins regularly. Mortality rates due to ALS were 62 percent lower among long-term users of vitamin E than non-vitamin-users, the investigators report in the Annals of Neurology. No significant associations were observed for vitamin C or multivitamin supplement use. It was noted that the occasional use of vitamin E had no effect on ALS risk.

The researchers suggest that by reducing oxidative stress, vitamin E could influence several downstream events that result in the death of motor neurons.

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