5/2/2005 PR Newswire WASHINGTON -- Fourteen leading safety and antioxidantexperts reviewed the available scientific literature on vitamins E and Cand concluded vitamin E is safe for the general population at intakes upto 1600 IU daily and vitamin C is safe at up to 2000 mg daily, accordingto a new article published in the April issue of the American Journal ofClinical Nutrition (AJCN).
"This peer-reviewed expert analysis should help reassure consumers aboutthe safety of vitamin E for a healthy population at the most common dailydoses on the market -- 400 IU and 200 IU -- for vitamin E singlesupplements," said John Hathcock, Ph.D., vice president, scientific andinternational affairs, Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), and thelead author on the article. However, Dr. Hathcock pointed out thatconsumers should not view the study's conclusions as a license to exceedrecommended doses on product labels, noting that the UL ("Tolerable UpperIntake Level") is a dose at which "there is no known harm but it is not arecommendation or suggestion for daily use."
In reviewing the available scientific literature on vitamins E and C, thescientists reviewed clinical trials as well as epidemiological studies inhumans, determining there was sufficient information from human data tosupport a conclusion on safety. This is in contrast to the approach takenby the Institute of Medicine (IOM), a scientific advisory body, whichestablished its UL for vitamin E based on an extrapolation from animaldata. The IOM set a UL at 1000 mg for vitamin E (which is equivalent to1000 IU synthetic; 1500 IU natural).
With regard to vitamin C, the authors noted that "Numerous studies ofvitamin C supplementation have provided no pattern of evidence to supportconcerns about safety other than occasional gastrointestinal upset or milddiarrhea..." The authors came to the same conclusion as the IOM inestablishing the UL at 2000 mg for vitamin C.
The review of the scientific literature encompassed 95 references,including the recent, controversial meta-analysis on vitamin E from JohnsHopkins University.
Vitamins E and C are among the most popular dietary supplements. Manystudies suggest that these antioxidant supplements, either alone or incombination with other supplements, can help promote overall good healthand be helpful in lowering the risk of specific chronic diseases, such asAlzheimer's, age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, some types ofcancer, and ischemic heart disease.
The article, titled "Vitamins E and C are safe across a broad range ofintakes," is available on-line athttp://www.ajcn.org/cgi/content/full/81/4/736. In addition to Dr.Hathcock, the authors include: Angelo Azzi, M.D., Ph.D., the University ofBern, Switzerland; Jeffrey Blumberg, Ph.D., Tufts University; Tammy Bray,Ph.D., Oregon State University, Corvallis; Annette Dickinson, Ph.D.,Council for Responsible Nutrition; Balz Frei, Ph.D., Oregon StateUniversity, Corvallis; Ishwarlal Jialal, M.D., Ph.D., University ofCalifornia, Davis; Carol S. Johnston, Ph.D., Arizona State University,Mesa; Frank J. Kelly, Ph.D., King's College, London, United Kingdom; KlausKraemer, Ph.D., formerly with BASF, Germany; Lester Packer, Ph.D.,University of Southern California, Los Angeles; Sampath Parthasarathy,Ph.D., Louisiana State University, New Orleans; Helmut Sies, M.D., Ph.D.,Heinrich Heine University, Dusseldorf, Germany; Maret G. Traber, Ph.D.,Oregon State University, Corvallis.
Note to Editor: The Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), founded in1973, is a Washington, D.C.-based trade association representing dietarysupplement industry ingredient suppliers and manufacturers. CRN membersadhere to a strong code of ethics, comply with dosage limits andmanufacture dietary supplements to high quality standards under goodmanufacturing practices.
SOURCE: Council for Responsible Nutrition
CONTACT: Judy Blatman of the Council for Responsible Nutrition,+1-202-204-7962