artery 3Atherosclerosis is produced by a combination of inflammation and pro-atherogenic lipids. It stands to reason that a mixture of anti-inflammatory substances may reduce the risk for cardiovascular disease. That idea was tested by an animal study that was recently published in the Journal of Nutrition (Epublished ahead of print March 16, 2011). The researchers produced a mixture containing resveratrol, lycopene, catechin, vitamin E, vitamin C and fish oil (also called anti-inflammatory dietary mixture, or AIDM by researchers).

Male human C-reactive protein (CRP) transgenic mice and female ApoE* 3 Leiden transgenic mice were used in the experiment. The male and the female mice were each divided into two groups. One group was given a placebo and the other was given AIDM for a period of six weeks. The AIDM reduced the CRP and fibrinogen expression in the human CRP transgenic mice. It also reduced serum cholesterol and serum amyloid. The long-term treatment with the AIDM reduced atherosclerosis by 96% in the female ApoE* 3 Leiden transgenic mice, compared to the placebo group.

Similarly, antioxidants will protect the arteries. Vitamin E has been studied in this capacity. Vitamin E refers to a group of eight fat-soluble compounds that include both tocopherols and tocotrienols. A recent study, appearing in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry (2012 Jul 25) found that a mixture of tocopherols that was high in gamma tocopherol, acted to protect the lining of the blood vessels–specifically against inflammatory chemicals produced after consuming sugar. The subjects of the randomized, crossover study were 15 healthy young men who were given the tocopherol mixture or a placebofor five days prior to a 75 gram glucose challenge.