In a five-year study, which included 468 newly diagnosed bladder cancer patients and 534 cancer-free controls, the researchers found that high dietary intake of alpha-tocopherol, one form of vitamin E, significantly reduced the risk of developing bladder cancer.
But gamma-tocopherol, which is consumed in greater amounts than alpha-tocopherol in the United States, offered no protection, say the researchers, led by Xifeng Wu, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology at M. D. Anderson, and including nutritionists from Texas Woman's University as well as epidemiologists from M. D. Anderson.
"High intake of vitamin E from dietary sources was associated with a 42 percent reduced risk of bladder cancer whereas a high intake of vitamin E from diet and supplements combined reduced the risk by 44 percent," says the study's first author, research dietician Ladia Hernandez, M.S., R.D. L.D., research dietitian in the Department of Epidemiology at M. D. Anderson.
"The study is not over, but my advice is that everyone should eat a healthy diet that includes fruit, vegetables and nuts," says co-investigator, John Radcliffe, Ph.D., R.D., of the Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences at Texas Woman's University. "Most people now do not meet the recommended dietary allowance of 15 milligrams of vitamin E from their diet; typical dietary intake is 8 milligrams per day."
Many vegetables, nuts, fruits and oils contain both forms of vitamin E, but those richest in alpha-tocopherol include almonds, red and green peppers, spinach, mustard greens, sunflower seeds and vegetable
Contact: Julie Penne
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center