Patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease were able to care for themselves longer and needed less help performing everyday chores when they took a daily capsule containing 200 IUs of alpha tocopherol, or vitamin E, a study has found.
Compared with subjects who took placebo pills, those who took daily supplements of the antioxidant vitamin E and were followed for an average of two years and three months delayed their loss of function by a little over six months on average, a 19% improvement. And the vitamin E group’s increased need for caregiver help was the lowest of several groups, including those taking the Alzheimer’s drug memantine, those taking memantine and vitamin E, and those taking a placebo pill.
The new research, published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Assn. (JAMA), also cast doubt on earlier findings suggesting that vitamin E supplements hastened death in those with Alzheimer’s. The study found that subjects taking vitamin E were no more likely to die of any cause during the study period than those taking memantine or a placebo.
The findings offer a slim ray of hope that the progressive memory loss and mental confusion that characterizes Alzheimer’s can at least be slowed by an agent that is inexpensive and easily accessible. Far more expensive drugs that come with greater risks and more side effects have failed to do as well in altering the trajectory of the disease.
The authors of the study called the outcomes seen among those who took vitamin E “a meaningful treatment effect” that was on a par with those seen in clinical trials of prescription drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration. They expressed surprise that those taking memantine along with vitamin E did not show a delay in functional loss. Possibly, the researchers noted, memantine may disrupt or hinder the metabolism or absorption of vitamin E.
“For people who are in the early stage of Alzheimer’s disease, I think any delay in the rate of progression is meaningful and important,” said Maurice W. Dysken, the study’s lead author.
While memantine has shown itself effective in slowing loss of function among patients with moderate to severe Alzheimer’s, its effectiveness in earlier stages of the disease has been less well explored.
In an accompanying editorial in JAMA, Dr. Denis A. Evans, a neurologist at Rush University Medical Center, called the effects of vitamin E “modest” in that it appeared to ameliorate symptoms rather than disrupt or reverse the inexorable march of the disease. Given the expected swelling numbers of those at risk and the discouraging record of progress in finding therapies that could reverse or cure Alzheimer’s, Evans wrote, a shift in emphasis toward the prevention “seems warranted.”
The study is one of the largest and longest to track participants with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. It followed 561 patients, 97% of them men, from 14 Veterans Affairs medical centers around the country. Researchers tracked each subject for as little as six months and as long as four years after diagnosis with possible or probable Alzheimer’s disease of mild to moderate severity.
Subjects were assigned randomly to one of four groups: 139 subjects got a hard-gelatin, liquid-filled capsule of 200 IUs of DL-alpha-tocopherol acetate (“synthetic” vitamin E) and a maintenance dose of 10 mg. of memantine; 140 got the vitamin E capsule and a memantine placebo; 142 got a placebo vitamin E capsule and memantine; and 140 got placebo vitamin E and placebo memantine.
Using a 78-point inventory of “activities of daily living,” researchers evaluated subjects’ function every six months, and asked caregivers to report on dementia-related behavioral problems and how much assistance the subjects needed in six major areas of activity. They also assessed subjects’ memory, language, gait and general mental function.
While subjects on memantine and those on the placebo required increased caregiver assistance ranging from 2.2% to 2.43% annually, caregivers of those taking vitamin E reported their time spent assisting the patient increased annually by 1.48%.
Vitamin E has long been hailed for its antioxidant properties, but less well-known is its role in keeping muscles healthy. During exercise, muscle cell membranes tear, which is why you might feel sore after going to the gym, and vitamin E plays a key role in healing them. Without it, the plasma membrane, responsible for holding a cell together, cannot heal. The vitamin is actually a group of eight naturally occurring chemicals called tocopherols and tocotrienols. Here, is a polarised light micrograph of vitamin E (tocopherol) crystals, the richest sources of which are nuts, seeds, cereals and plant oils. Understanding the way vitamin E repairs muscle cell membranes could have implications for muscular dystrophy and diabetes-related muscle weakness.
Here is a list of my favorite all natural beauty products. Although I occasionally use drugstore/mainstream brands, I find that these natural alternatives work best for my face, body and hair.
The prices listed below are from the brand’s online store, and most times, they are much cheaper in-store. You can find these products at most health food stores, and some stores such as Wal-Mart and Target. Also, feel free to use other brands. This is just what I like!
The most important benefit of a cucumber is that it helps in revitalizing the skin. You can use a cucumber to improve your complexion as well as treat open pores. For those of you with freckles, cucumber is rich in vitamin E so it’ll help treat freckes, blemishes and wrinkles. Overall, cucumber contains mostly water which helps in keeping the skin hydrated and moisturised. Last only four days if kept refridgerated.
VITAMINS EVERY WOMAN SHOULD BE TAKING DAILY FOR BEAUTY!
Women regardless should be taking vitamins however, there are several that are primarily for beauty.
Biotin - known as vitamin H - for hair and nails. It is found in many cosmetics and health products for the hair and skin
Evening Primrose Oil - a natural source of the unsaturated fatty acid (GOOD!), Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA), that promotes women’s health and helps provide nutritional support for PMS.* <– curb those mood swings and flow ladies!
Vitamin E - Great for skin and prevents dry damaged skin. Good for your hair and nails as well. check out this link for more information.
Ladies and gentlemen believe me I take these vitamin daily and I have proof that the results are worth the regime and money. As a makeup artist I refer all my clients with acne issues and skin irritation and are prone to dry patches to take these vitamins on a daily basis.
Try to stay clear from Oils, it is the actual chemical in it’s purest form and you may see clogged pores instead of clear skin. The capsules are the exact dosage one should take so I highly recommend the pill form. I do have the Vitamin E Oil for those rare occasions that I have a dry patch (especially during these winter months)
I hope this helps some of you and if you have any questions please feel free to contact me.
A large new Northwestern Medicine study upends our understanding of vitamin E and ties the increasing consumption of supposedly healthy vitamin E-rich oils – canola, soybean and corn – to the rising incidence of lung inflammation and, possibly, asthma.
The new study shows drastically different health effects of vitamin E depending on its form. The form of vitamin E called gamma-tocopherol in the ubiquitous soybean, corn and canola oils is associated with decreased lung function in humans, the study reports. The other form of vitamin E, alpha-tocopherol, which is found in olive and sunflower oils, does the opposite. It’s associated with better lung function.
This study was supported by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health grant R-1 AT004837.
Vitamin E has many true benefits for our body and we need to take a vitamin E supplement that is well balanced and high in all constituents–alpha, beta, gamma, and delta tocopherols. Read your labels carefully to avoid any vitamin E made by a process called esterification, Most of esterified vitamin E is not labeled as “esterified”, but rather as “acetate” or “succinate”. Make double-sure that you are taking the mixed tocopherols though as the fractionalized dl-alpha form can be toxic taken alone. The alpha without the gamma causes dangerous shortfalls in the gamma form in your body. READ MORE>