Beta-Carotene and Vitamin E could slow down lung aging

March 24, 2006

As we age our lung function declines. In this study, researchers at the University of Medicine Bichat, in Paris, followed 535 individuals from 1992 in a European respiratory health study known as ECRHS. The participants were approximately an equal number of men and women, 20% were moderate smokers and 10% were heavy smokers. Blood samples were used to determine antioxidant levels and lung function was measured by using forced expiratory volume (the amount of air the lungs can forcibly push out in one second). Individuals with the highest blood levels of beta-carotene reduced the yearly decline in lung function significantly (8 ml. per year) compared to those with the lowest beta-carotene blood levels. For heavy smokers defined as those who smoked more than 20 cigarettes per day, low blood levels of both beta-carotene and also vitamin E had a decrease in lung function by a whopping 50ml per year (almost 2 ounces of air volume). Previous studies have shown that beta-carotene and vitamin E are found in relatively high concentrations in lung tissue and serve to protect it from when there is contact with harmful oxidizing elements such as soot or ozone. The researchers state that those who continue to smoke and have low levels of these antioxidants are going to have a very high increased risk of developing emphysema and COPD. The study is published in the current issue of the international respiratory journal Thorax.

Studies show it is not the caffeine which helps decrease the risk of developing diabetes but probably the polyphenols.

More evidence that Resveratrol helps prevent kidney damage

Rhabdomyolysis is a painful destruction of muscle fibers causing the release of muscle content into the circulation. Levels of Creatine kinase (or CCK - an enzyme that creates energy in the muscle) and myoglobin (the oxygen carrying protein in muscle that functions like hemoglobin) increase in the blood. These patients generally feel muscle tenderness and muscle aching.The urine can become dark or cola colored. Rhabdomyolysis leads to kidney damage, kidney failure, and death. Rhabdomyolysis accounts for 10% to 40% of all cases of sudden kidney failure (acute renal failure). Statin drugs that reduce cholesterol have caused rhabdomyolysis and then death in some patients. In this study a large amount of a chemical was injected into rats to cause acute renal failure due to rhabdomyolysis. Injury to the kidney was assessed by measuring the level of plasma creatinine, blood urea nitrogen, and blood creatinine (not the supplement creatine) in the plasma and by urea clearance by the kidneys.Giving Resveratrol supplementation 60 minutes before injecting the chemical markedly decreased damage to kidney tissue, a drop in kidney function, and production of inflammatory free radicals, while improving antioxidant enzyme levels in the kidneys (protective levels of glutathione, glutathione reductase, catalase, and superoxide dismutase). The study is published in the current issue of the journal Renal Failure (2006;28[2]).