Vitamin E levels, cognitive impairment and dementia in older persons: the InCHIANTI study

Neurobiol Aging. 2005 Jul;26(7):987-94. doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2004.09.002. Epub 2004 Nov 5.


There is conflicting evidence that antioxidants contribute to maintaining cognitive function in elderly subjects. We investigated whether vitamin E plasma levels are related to the presence of dementia and cognitive impairment in a population-based cohort study conducted in Italy. A total of 1033 participants aged at least 65 years received clinical and neuropsychological examinations, donated blood for vitamin E analysis and had their diets assessed. Participants with plasma vitamin E levels in the bottom tertile had a significantly higher probability of being demented (OR 2.6, 95% CI 1.0-7.1) and also of suffering from cognitive impairment (OR 2.2, 95% CI 1.2-4.2) compared to those in the highest vitamin E tertile after adjustment for age, gender, education, lipid levels, energy intake, vitamin E intake, and smoking. This study supports the notion that higher vitamin E plasma levels might provide significant protection against cognitive impairment and dementia in elderly subjects.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid / methods
  • Cognition Disorders / blood*
  • Cognition Disorders / epidemiology
  • Cohort Studies
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Dementia / blood*
  • Dementia / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Geriatric Assessment*
  • Humans
  • Italy / epidemiology
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Mental Status Schedule
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Odds Ratio
  • Population Surveillance
  • Prospective Studies
  • Vitamin E / blood*


  • Vitamin E