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Vitamin E May Extend Life in Alzheimer’s Patients

Vitamin EAccording to a new research report, people with Alzheimer’s disease who take vitamin E appear to live longer than those who don’t take vitamin E.

For the study, researchers followed 847 people with Alzheimer’s disease for an average of five years. About two-thirds of the group took 1,000 international units of vitamin E twice a day along with an Alzheimer’s drug (a cholinesterase inhibitor). Less than 10 percent of the group took vitamin E alone and approximately 15 percent did not take vitamin E.

The study will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting in Chicago, April 12–19, 2008.

Researchers found people who took vitamin E, with or without a cholinesterase inhibitor, were 26 percent less likely to die than people who didn’t take vitamin E.

“Vitamin E has previously been shown to delay the progression of moderately severe Alzheimer’s disease. Now, we’ve been able to show that vitamin E appears to increase the survival time of Alzheimer’s patients as well,” said study author Valory Pavlik, PhD, with Baylor College of Medicine’s Alzheimer’s Disease and Memory Disorders Center in Houston, TX.

“This is particularly important because recent studies in heart disease patients have questioned whether vitamin E is beneficial for survival.”

In addition, the study found vitamin E plus a cholinesterase inhibitor may be more beneficial than taking either agent alone. “Our findings show that people who took a cholinesterase inhibitor without vitamin E did not have a survival benefit,” said Pavlik. “More research needs to be done to determine why this may be the case.”

In addition to vitamin E supplements, some vegetables oils, nuts, and green leafy vegetables are main food sources of vitamin E. Some fortified cereals in the United States also contain vitamin E.

“The daily amount of vitamin E taken by patients in this study was much higher than what is currently recommended for the general population,” said Pavlik.

Source: American Academy of Neurology

Vitamin E May Extend Life in Alzheimer’s Patients

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Vitamin E May Extend Life in Alzheimer’s Patients. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 17, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2008/04/16/vitamin-e-may-extend-life-in-alzheimers-patients/2157.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.