In this study we tested the hypothesis that dietary vitamin E supplementation can improve carotid artery elasticity and cardio-vagal baroreflex gain in young, healthy individuals. A total of 20 subjects were studied in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized study. Subjects in the active treatment group received 700 IU/day vitamin E for 1 month. Each subject was studied three times: before, during and 1 month after treatment. Plasma vitamin E levels were determined using high-performance liquid chromatography. Carotid artery diameter was measured by ultrasound and radial artery pressure by tonometry. Baroreflex function was assessed by time and frequency domain spontaneous indices. Plasma vitamin E levels increased by 123%, which was associated with a 20% increase in carotid artery compliance and a 30-60% increase in baroreflex indices. All these changes regressed 1 month after cessation of vitamin E supplementation. Significant correlations were observed across conditions (control, treatment and recovery), among plasma vitamin E concentrations, carotid artery compliance and distensibility values and two of the baroreflex gain indices in the treatment group. Our results demonstrate that vitamin E supplementation can increase carotid artery compliance and baroreflex gain in young, apparently healthy adults.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience