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Increased vitamin E intake may reduce risk of liver cancer

August 3, 2012

High consumption of vitamin E, either by dietary means or from supplement use, may lower the risk of liver cancer according to a new study from China.

To determine a potential relationship between vitamin E intake and liver cancer risk, the observational study analyzed the dietary habits of 132,837 middle-aged or older Chinese participants and cases of liver cancer that developed between two years after the start of the study and an average of further 11 years for women and 5 years for men (1). The study results showed that an increased vitamin E intake by dietary means and taking vitamin E supplements were both associated with a lower risk of liver cancer.

The researchers commented that they found a clear relationship between the dose of antioxidant vitamin E intake and the magnitude of disease risk reduction. Liver cancer is the third most common cause of cancer mortality in the world, the fifth most common cancer found in men and the seventh most common in women. Approximately 85% of liver cancers occur in developing nations, with 54% in China alone. Epidemiological studies that examined the relationship between vitamin E intake and liver cancer have produced inconsistent results in the past.

References

  1. Zhang W. et al. Vitamin intake and liver cancer risk: A report from two cohort studies in China. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Published online July 2012.