Dietary lipophilic antioxidants: implications and significance in the aging process

Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2010 Nov;50(10):931-7. doi: 10.1080/10408390903044073.


Longevity can be explained by the free radical theory of aging, and caloric restriction (CR) studies showed that CR-induced lifespan extension is associated with the prevention of a decrease in oxidative stress. Non-enzymatic lipophilic antioxidants may play a pivotal role in our aging process, and are reflected in our dietary lifestyle and dietary supplementation. Their significance lies in their general good absorption and slow excretion within our body. Although difficulties exist with human aging studies due to the nature of our longevity in comparison with other species, findings have implied a relationship between non-enzymatic antioxidants and longevity. Common non-enzymatic antioxidants found in our dietary intake include vitamin A and E supplementation, flavanoids (major source includes tea, one of our main fluid intake), resveratrol (its protective role in cardiovascular disease and aging having stemmed from the "French Paradox"), as well as coenzyme Q₁₀ supplementation. The review discusses current findings and their implication in the aging process. This review concludes by asserting that although none of these antioxidants has yet provided clear-cut evidence toward longevity and the aging process, they have certainly demonstrated other potential health benefits.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Diet
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Free Radicals / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Longevity*
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Resveratrol
  • Stilbenes / pharmacology
  • Ubiquinone / pharmacology
  • Vitamin A / pharmacology*
  • Vitamin E / pharmacology*


  • Antioxidants
  • Free Radicals
  • Stilbenes
  • Vitamin A
  • Ubiquinone
  • Vitamin E
  • Resveratrol