A study conducted at the University of Helsinki in Finland has shown that men older than 71 may add years to their life by taking vitamin E supplements.
Researchers studied a total of 10,837 people in several randomized trials and found that the supplement had no effect on men between 65 and 70 years old, but in men 71 and older it reduced mortality by 24 percent .
Additionally, when looking at 2,284 men who took more vitamin C supplements than the average participant and smoked less than a pack of cigarettes per day, vitamin E appeared to add two years to an individual's life expectancy.
Overall, the study showed that vitamin E had little effect on life expectancy but researchers noted that significant benefits to a specific population may have been masked by the results of a test sample that was too diverse. They suggested a follow-up study that divides participants into groups according to their age.
The National Institutes of Health has reported that vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps the body fight against damaging free radicals like smoke, pollution and other environmental hazards. Intake of the vitamin could also help blood flow by dilating blood vessels.