19 Nov Vitamin E may boost IQ for low birth weight infants, says study
Long term supplementation of extremely low birth weight infants with Vitamin E may improve mental development, according to a new study from Japan.
Scientists from Osaka University and Osaka Medical College report that supplementing extremely low birth weight infants for greater than six months was associated with significantly lower odds of for impaired mental development at eight years, compared with the control group.
“The hypothesis that alpha-Tocopherol induces synapse elimination in the brain during early infancy could explain the improvement in group C’s developmental scores,” they wrote in Acta Paediatrica. “In this group, developmental quotient and IQ levels were higher and learning disorder and borderline intellectual disability were less frequent than other groups.”
Vitamin E -the overlooked nutrient from brain health?
There are eight forms of vitamin E: Four tocopherols (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) and four tocotrienols (alpha, beta, gamma, delta).
The majority of the science in the past has looked at vitamin E in the apha-tocopherol form in the context of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and eye disease.
Several recent studies have reported the potential brain health benefits of the nutrient, with data from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden indicating that all plasma vitamin E forms may play a role in brain health.
The new study from Japan is said to be only the third to “provide
evidence for the role of alpha-Tocopherol in child development and the
first to show the effective duration of alpha-Tocopherol administration
in extremely low birth weight infants.”