Vitamin C may block the creation of one of the most dangerous cancer causing chemicals in cigarette smoke.

August 01, 2007

N-Nitrosonornicotine (NNN) is one of the most abundant strong carcinogens in unburned tobacco and cigarette smoke. It is classified as a cancer causing chemical in humans by the International Agency for Research on Cancer. Some of the NNN is created in the body by our saliva while smoking and some is present in the smoke that is inhaled; it is also present in chewing tobacco. When rats were treated with NNN precursors that create the NNN in our body Vitamin C as ascorbic acid blocked the creation by 91%. The research was a joint venture between the University of Minnesota Cancer Center and Moldova State University and the study is published in the July 19th, 2007 issue of the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Resveratrol may directly protect the heart muscle of diabetics

Excessive free radical damage (the opposite of antioxidants) is implicated in the diseases and complications that accompany diabetes; this leads to the damage seen in the heart if blood flow is reduced and then gushes back into the heart, a condition known as myocardial ischemic reperfusion injury. This injury takes place after heart surgery and most notably after a heart attack. It can also happen after an attack of unstable angina where a piece of plaque ruptures in the hearts internal arteries.

Scientists at the University of Connecticut Medical Center in Farmington blocked the activity of the natural vasodilators in the circulatory system of diabetic rats. Resveratrol surprisingly decreased blood glucose levels significantly. When the animals hearts had a 30 minute blockage of blood flow and then were subjected 2 a hour period where blood rapidly was reintroduced to the hearts, the major cause of damage caused by a stroke or heart attack, Resveratrol helped maintain normal function of the left ventricle during this entire period. The left ventricle is the largest most muscular chamber of the heart that pumps oxygenated blood to the rest of the body and any disruption here can lead to death. The size of the damage to the heart muscle was also significantly reduced by Resveratrol and fewer heart cells died. Resveratrol also improved Superoxide Dismutase levels in the animals and improved the ability to create new blood vessels to protect the heart; a form of natural bypass. The study is published in the September 1st, 2007 issue of the journal Free Radical Biology Medicine.