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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Hartman, Terryl
item Baer, David
item Parker, Carol
item Stone, William
item Gunter, Elaine
item Albert, Paul
item Dorgan, Joanne
item Brown, Ellen
item Campbell, William
item Tomer, Kenneth

Submitted to: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/4/2004
Publication Date: 9/15/2004
Citation: Hartman, T.J., Baer, D.J., Parker, C.E., Stone, W.L., Gunter, E.W., Albert, P.S., Dorgan, J.F., Brown, E.D., Campbell, W.S., Tomer, K.B. 2004. Moderate alcohol consumption and levels of antioxidant vitamins and isoprostanes in post-menopausal women. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 59:161-168.

Interpretive Summary: Postmenopausal women participated in a controlled dietary intervention study to learn about the effect of moderate alcohol consumption on antioxidant vitamins and isoprostanes (an endprotuct of lipid damage). The women consumed a control beverage containing no alcohol, 1 drink/day and 2 drinks/day for 8 weeks. At the end of each treatment, antioxidant vitamins (two forms of vitamin E and vitamin C), selenium, and isoprostanes were measured in the blood. We found that alpha-tocopherol significantly decreased 4.6% and isoprostane increased marginally 4.9%. Gamma-tocopherol, selenium and vitamin C were unaffected by the alcohol. These findings suggest that moderate alcohol consumption increases some biomarkers of oxidative stress in post-menopausal women. These data are important for postmenopausal women who are interested in making dietary choices that can decrease risk for disease, as well as health professionals and policy makers who provide recommendations concerning alcohol consumption.

Technical Abstract: The Postmenopausal Women's Alcohol Study was designed to explore the effects of moderate alcohol consumption on potential risk factors for breast cancer. Participants (n=53) consumed a controlled diet plus each of three treatments (15 or 30 gm alcohol/day or a no-alcohol placebo beverage), during three 8-week periods in random order. We measured the antioxidants, vitamin E (alpha- and gamma-tocopherols), selenium, and vitamin C in fasting blood samples which were collected at the end of diet periods. We also measured 15-F2t-IsoP isoprostane, produced by lipid peroxidation, an indicator of oxidative stress that may serve as a biomarker for conditions favorable to carcinogenesis. After adjusting for body mass index and total serum cholesterol (tocopherol and isoprostane models) we observed a significant 4.6% decrease (p=0.02) in alpha-tocopherol and a marginally significant 4.9% increase (p=0.07) in isoprostane levels when women consumed 30 gm alcohol/day (p=0.06 and 0.05 for overall effect of alcohol on alpha-tocopherol and isoprostanes, respectively). The other antioxidants were not significantly modified by the alcohol treatment. These results suggest that moderate alcohol consumption increases some biomarkers of oxidative stress in post-menopausal women.

Last Modified: 8/24/2016
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