Dietary and circulating antioxidant vitamins in relation to carotid plaques in middle-aged women

Arcangelo Iannuzzi, Egidio Celentano, Salvatore Panico, Rocco Galasso, Giuseppe Covetti, Lucia Sacchetti, Federica Zarrilli, Mario De Michele, Paolo Rubba

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: The results of the few studies conducted on the relation between antioxidant vitamins and carotid atherosclerosis have been inconclusive. Objective: We evaluated the association between preclinical carotid atherosclerosis, as determined by high-resolution B-mode ultrasound, and both the intake amounts and plasma concentrations of antioxidant vitamins. Design: Among 5062 participants in Progetto Atena, a populationbased study on the etiology of cardiovascular disease and cancer in women, 310 women were examined by B-mode ultrasound to detect early signs of carotid atherosclerosis. The participants answered a food-frequency questionnaire, and their plasma concentrations of vitamin E, vitamin A, and carotenoids were measured. None of the women took vitamin supplements. Results: The occurrence of atherosclerotic plaques at the carotid bifurcation was inversely associated with tertiles of vitamin E intake; the test for a linear trend across tertiles was significant (P <0.05). Similarly, the ratio of plasma vitamin E to plasma cholesterol was inversely related to the presence of plaques at the carotid bifurcation; the test for a linear trend across tertiles was significant (P <0.02). No association was found between the intake of other antioxidant vitamins (vitamins A and C and carotenoids) or their plasma concentrations and the presence of carotid plaques. Conclusions: An inverse association was found between both the intake amount and plasma concentration of vitamin E and preclinical carotid atherosclerosis in middle-aged women. This association was independent of other cardiovascular risk factors, was not related to vitamin supplements, and supports the hypothesis that low vitamin E intake is a risk factor for early atherosclerosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)582-587
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume76
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2002

    Fingerprint

Keywords

  • Antioxidants
  • Atherosclerosis
  • Carotid arteries
  • Carotid bifurcation
  • Progetto Atena
  • Ultrasound
  • Vitamin E
  • Women

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science

Cite this

Iannuzzi, A., Celentano, E., Panico, S., Galasso, R., Covetti, G., Sacchetti, L., Zarrilli, F., De Michele, M., & Rubba, P. (2002). Dietary and circulating antioxidant vitamins in relation to carotid plaques in middle-aged women. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 76(3), 582-587.