Vitamin E 'may ward off decline'

Vitamin E may ward off physical decline in elderly people, research suggests.

Researchers found people aged over 65 who had lower levels of vitamin E performed worse on tests of basic physical ability. The key may be that vitamin E is an antioxidant, protecting the body's tissues from damage caused by charged particles called free radicals.

The Yale University School of Medicine study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The researchers measured levels of vitamins in the blood of 698 volunteers from areas around the Italian city of Florence. The volunteers' performance on three physical tests - a short walk, balance and standing up from a seated position - were monitored over a three-year period.

While the researchers found an association between vitamin E and performance, their work suggested no such link with other essential vitamins, such as folate, B6, B12 and D.

Source - BBC

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