Dietary antioxidants and Parkinson disease. The Rotterdam Study

Arch Neurol. 1997 Jun;54(6):762-5. doi: 10.1001/archneur.1997.00550180070015.


Objective: To investigate whether high dietary intake of antioxidants decreases the risk of Parkinson disease (PD).

Setting: The community-based Rotterdam Study, the Netherlands.

Design: The cross-sectional study formed part of a large community-based study in which all participants were individually screened for parkinsonism and were administered a semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire. The study population consisted of 5342 independently living individuals without dementia between 55 and 95 years of age, including 31 participants with PD (Hoehn-Yahr stages 1-3).

Results: The odds ratio for PD was 0.5 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.2-0.9) per 10-mg daily dietary vitamin E intake, 0.6 (95% CI, 0.3-1.3) per 1-mg beta carotene intake, 0.9 (95% CI, 0.4-1.9) per 100-mg vitamin C intake, and 0.9 (95% CI, 0.7-1.2) per 10-mg flavonoids intake, all adjusted for age, sex, smoking habits, and energy intake. The association with vitamin E intake was dose dependent (P for trend = .03). To assess whether the association was different in participants with more advanced disease, we excluded those with PD who had a Hoehn-Yahr stage of 2.5 or 3. This did not fundamentally alter the results.

Conclusion: Our data suggest that a high intake of dietary vitamin E may protect against the occurrence of PD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage*
  • Ascorbic Acid / administration & dosage
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diet*
  • Female
  • Flavonoids / administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Netherlands
  • Odds Ratio
  • Parkinson Disease, Secondary / prevention & control*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vitamin E / administration & dosage
  • beta Carotene / administration & dosage


  • Antioxidants
  • Flavonoids
  • beta Carotene
  • Vitamin E
  • Ascorbic Acid