Selenium, antioxidants, cardiovascular disease, and all-cause mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.
The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2020;112(6):1642-1652
Plain language summary
Oxidative damage is a shared characteristic in chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), diabetes, cancer and ageing. Antioxidants mitigate the impact of oxidants and have been widely investigated in ageing and disease. However, the evidence for supplementary antioxidants has been mixed and some authorities have advised against the use of certain single nutrients for the prevention of CVD or cancer. This systematic review and meta-analysis focused on selenium due to its vital role in the antioxidant system and associations of low selenium blood levels with increased risk of CVD, cancers and death. The study included 43 randomised controlled trials (RCTs) evaluating the effect of supplemental selenium and antioxidants with or without selenium and their impact on CVD risk, cancer and all-cause mortality. Overall supplemental selenium or antioxidants alone did not seem to be associated with CVD outcomes, cancer, CVD and cancer mortality, or all-cause mortality. On close examination, a decreased risk was seen for CVD mortality when antioxidants were combined with selenium, whilst antioxidant mixtures without selenium demonstrated an increased risk in all-cause mortality. The findings did not seem to be influenced by dietary selenium intake. The authors suggested that inclusion of selenium as part of an antioxidant mix could be key for an antioxidant associated risk reduction. However, in the absence of further long term studies, a balanced antioxidant-rich diet was advocated as the safest approach. In clinical practice, where antioxidant support beyond diet is warranted, supplemental antioxidant use should be concurrent with adequate selenium supplementation, with dose benefits of 50-200mcg observed.
BACKGROUND Antioxidants have been promoted for cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk reduction and for the prevention of cancer. Our preliminary analysis suggested that only when selenium was present were antioxidant mixtures associated with reduced all-cause mortality. OBJECTIVE We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to determine the effect of selenium supplementation alone and of antioxidant mixtures with or without selenium on the risk of CVD, cancer, and mortality. METHODS We identified studies using the Cochrane Library, Medline, and Embase for potential CVD outcomes, cancer, and all-cause mortality following selenium supplementation alone or after antioxidant supplement mixtures with and without selenium up to June 5, 2020. RCTs of ≥24 wk were included and data were analyzed using random-effects models and classified by the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation approach. RESULTS The meta-analysis identified 9423 studies, of which 43 were used in the final analysis. Overall, no association of selenium alone or antioxidants was seen with CVD and all-cause mortality. However, a decreased risk with antioxidant mixtures was seen for CVD mortality when selenium was part of the mix (RR: 0.77; 95% CI: 0.62, 0.97; P = 0.02), with no association when selenium was absent. Similarly, when selenium was part of the antioxidant mixture, a decreased risk was seen for all-cause mortality (RR: 0.90; 95% CI: 0.82, 0.98; P = 0.02) as opposed to an increased risk when selenium was absent (RR: 1.09; 95% CI: 1.04, 1.13; P = 0.0002). CONCLUSION The addition of selenium should be considered for supplements containing antioxidant mixtures if they are to be associated with CVD and all-cause mortality risk reduction. This trial was registered at https://www.crd.york.ac.uk/PROSPERO/ as CRD42019138268.
Improved antioxidant and fatty acid status of patients with cystic fibrosis after antioxidant supplementation is linked to improved lung function.
The American journal of clinical nutrition. 2003;77(1):150-9
Plain language summary
Oxidative stress is elevated in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF). It has been hypothesised that supplementing with antioxidants reduces oxidative stress and therefore the rate of lung deterioration in CF patients. The aim of the study was to examine oxidative stress and antioxidant defences in CF patients after antioxidation supplementation in relation to fatty acid status, dietary intake and clinical status. Children with CF were given a high dose supplement containing 200mg vitamin E, 300mg vitamin C, 25mg beta-carotene, 90 micrograms selenium and 500 micrograms vitamin A for 8 weeks. The control group received low doses of vitamins A and E equal to the RDA, which is part of routine treatment for some CF patients. At the end of the study, the group taking the high dose antioxidant supplement showed significant increases in plasma concentrations of vitamin E, beta-carotene, selenium and glutathione peroxidase compared to the control group. Despite this, there were no significant differences in markers of lung function or wellbeing between the two groups. The researchers did however find correlations between both increased plasma fatty acids and antioxidant (beta-carotene and selenium) status and improved lung function, suggesting that antioxidant supplementation and high fat diets may be beneficial for CF patients. Since increased plasma fatty acids are linked to oxidative stress, the authors point out the importance of reducing oxidative stress in CF patients who are on a high-fat diet.
BACKGROUND Oxidative stress, as measured by 8-iso-prostaglandin F(2)(alpha) (8-iso-PGF(2)(alpha)), and depleted antioxidant defenses were shown in stable cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. The plasma fatty acid status of CF patients was linked to oxidative stress after respiratory exacerbations. OBJECTIVE We examined changes in plasma 8-iso-PGF(2)(alpha), antioxidant defenses, plasma fatty acid status, and clinical markers resulting from short-term antioxidant supplementation. DESIGN Forty-six CF patients were randomly assigned to either group A [low dose of supplement (10 mg vitamin E and 500 micro g vitamin A)] or group B [high dose of supplement (200 mg vitamin E, 300 mg vitamin C, 25 mg beta-carotene, 90 micro g Se, and 500 micro g vitamin A)]. Plasma concentrations of 8-iso-PGF(2)(alpha), vitamins E and C, beta-carotene, zinc, selenium, and copper; plasma fatty acid composition; erythrocyte glutathione peroxidase (EC 126.96.36.199) and superoxide dismutase (EC 188.8.131.52) activities; lung function; and dietary intake were measured before and after 8 wk of supplementation. RESULTS Antioxidant defenses in group B improved, whereas those in group A did not: in groups B and A, the mean (+/- SEM) changes (Delta) in vitamin E were 10.6 +/- 1.5 and -1.9 +/- 0.9 micro mol/L, respectively (P < 0.001), (Delta)beta-carotene were 0.1 +/- 0.04 and -0.01 +/- 0.02 micro mol/L, respectively (P = 0.007), (Delta)selenium were 0.51 +/- 0.10 and -0.09 +/- 0.04 micro mol/L, respectively (P < 0.001), and (Delta)glutathione peroxidase activity were 1.3 +/- 0.3 and -0.3 +/- 0.6 U/g hemoglobin, respectively (P = 0.016). There were no significant differences between the groups in Delta8-iso-PGF(2)(alpha), (Delta)vitamin C, (Delta)fatty acid composition, (Delta)superoxide dismutase activity, (Delta)lung function, or (Delta)white cell count. Within group B, (Delta)beta-carotene correlated with (Delta)percentage of forced vital capacity (r = 0.586, P = 0.005), (Delta)selenium correlated with (Delta)percentage of forced expiratory volume in 1 s (r = 0.440, P = 0.046), and (Delta)plasma fatty acid concentrations correlated with (Delta)percentage of forced expiratory volume in 1 s (r = 0.583, P = 0.006) and Delta8-iso-PGF(2)(alpha) (r = 0.538, P = 0.010). CONCLUSIONS Whereas increased beta-carotene, selenium, and fatty acid concentrations are linked to improved lung function, increased plasma fatty acid concentrations are linked to oxidative stress. If oxidative stress is deemed to be important to the clinical outcome of CF patients, means of reducing oxidative stress while maintaining a high-fat, high-energy diet must be investigated.