cardio protective…. very nice!
rom: INTEGRATIVE MEDICAL-CONSULTING
Vitamin C Lowers Levels Of Inflammation Biomarker Considered Predictor Of Heart Disease ScienceDaily (Nov. 14, 2008) ””
A new study led by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, adds to the evidence that vitamin C supplements can lower concentrations of C-reactive protein (CRP), a central biomarker of inflammation that has been shown to be a powerful predictor of heart disease and diabetes. The same study found no benefit from daily doses of vitamin E, another antioxidant.This study comes just days after a larger, eight-year clinical trial led by researchers at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital failed to show that vitamins C or E could cut the risk of heart attacks or strokes. That trial does not necessarily close the books on the benefits of vitamin C for cardiovascular health, according to Gladys Block, UC Berkeley professor emeritus of epidemiology and public health nutrition and lead author of the study looking at vitamins C and E and their impact on CRP levels. She pointed out that the Brigham and Women’s Hospital study did not screen study participants for elevations in CRP – defined by the American Heart Association as 1 milligram per liter or greater – which is an important distinction in determining who might benefit from taking vitamin C. The study led by Block, currently online and scheduled to appear in the Jan. 1 issue of the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine, shows that for healthy, non-smoking adults with an elevated level of CRP, a daily dose of vitamin C lowered levels of the inflammation biomarker after two months compared with those who took a placebo. However, participants who did not start out with elevated CRP levels saw no benefit from vitamin C supplementation. “This is an important distinction; treatment with vitamin C is ineffective in persons whose levels of CRP are less than 1 milligram per liter, but very effective for those with higher levels,” said Block. “Grouping people with elevated CRP levels with those who have lower levels can mask the effects of vitamin C. Common sense suggests, and our study confirms, that biomarkers are only likely to be reduced if they are not already low.” The researchers said that for people with elevated CRP levels, the amount of CRP reduction achieved by taking vitamin C supplements in this study is comparable to that in many other studies of cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins. They noted that several larger statin trials lowered CRP levels by about 0.2 milligrams per liter; in this latest study, vitamin C lowered CRP by 0.25 milligrams per liter. “This finding of an effect of vitamin C is important because it shows in a carefully conducted randomized, controlled trial that for people with moderately elevated levels of inflammation, vitamin C may be able to reduce CRP as much as statins have done in other studies,” said Block. Evidence of the link between elevated CRP levels and a greater risk of heart disease has grown in recent years, but it had been unclear whether the beneficial effects of lowering CRP were independent of the effects of lowering cholesterol. Newly released results from a multinational clinical trial help answer that question. Led by researchers at Harvard Medical School, the study, known as the Jupiter trial, found that statins reduced cardiovascular mortality and morbidity among people whose cholesterol levels were normal, but whose levels of CRP were greater than 2 milligrams per liter. The Jupiter trial found that among people who had such high levels of CRP at baseline, levels of CRP were 37 percent lower with statins compared with a placebo. “One of the strengths of the Jupiter trial is that only persons with CRP levels greater than 2 milligrams per liter were enrolled,” Block added. “Researchers found very important effects of lowering CRP in people who had high levels to begin with.” In the UC Berkeley study on vitamin C, participants who started out with CRP levels greater than 2 milligrams per liter had 34 percent lower levels of CRP with vitamin C compared with a placebo. The UC Berkeley study also found a strong link between obesity and elevated levels of CRP. The researchers