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Two Antioxidant Vitamins Don't Protect Against Heart Disease
Date:11/11/2008

Study highlights:

- A major long-term study of more than 14,000 physicians showed no cardiovascular protection from two antioxidant vitamins taken by much of the American population.

- Taken individually, vitamins E and C failed to protect against heart and blood vessel disease.

NEW ORLEANS, Nov. 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Vitamins E and C -- antioxidant supplements taken by many American adults -- don't protect against cardiovascular disease when taken individually, according to a long-term study of more than 14,000 male physicians presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2008. Results of the Physician's Health Study II (PHS II) were presented as a late-breaking clinical trial. The study was simultaneously published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

"We found no compelling evidence that either individual vitamin E or vitamin C reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease," said J. Michael Gaziano, M.D., M.P.H., principal investigator of the study and a cardiologist at Brigham and Women's Hospital and VA Boston Healthcare System in Boston, Mass.

Gaziano said results of the study add to the growing consensus about vitamin E's lack of cardiovascular protection based on several earlier trials that failed to find any effect.

The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial included 14,641 U.S. physicians 50 and older. Cardiovascular disease in the study included nonfatal heart attack, nonfatal stroke and fatal cardiovascular disease

"This is one of the first large-scale, long-term clinical trials of individual vitamin C supplementation in the prevention of cardiovascular disease," said Howard D. Sesso, Sc.D., M.P.H., co-author and project director of PHS II and assistant professor of medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Unlike several earlier studies in which vitamins E and C were often given as part of an antioxidant cocktail, this study investigated th
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SOURCE American Heart Association
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