Greater intake of Vitamin E either as part of the diet or through supplements lowers the risk of liver cancer, according to a new research conducted by Xiao Ou Shu, professor of medicine, Vanderbilt University Epidemiology Centre, Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
Vitamin E is fat-soluble and acts as an antioxidant. Numerous studies have suggested that Vitamin E may also prevent DNA damage.
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, according to an article in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.
To determine the link between Vitamin E intake and liver cancer, Wei Zhang from Shanghai Cancer Institute and colleagues analysed data from 132,837 individuals in China, in two population-based cohort studies jointly conducted by the Shanghai Cancer Institute and Vanderbilt University.
Researchers asked participants how often they ate some of the most popular foods in urban Shanghai and whether they took vitamin supplements. They then compared liver cancer risk among participants having high and low vitamin E intake.
The analysis included 267 liver cancer patients (118 women and 149 men) who were diagnosed within two years of study enrolment. Vitamin E intake from diet and Vitamin E supplement use were both linked with a lower risk of liver cancer.
This association was consistent among participants with and without self-reported liver disease or a family history of liver cancer.