Science News

Asthma on the Increase - Vitamin E to Blame ?

Sun, 3rd Sep 2000

Part of the show Glaciology and Research in the Antarctic

Doctors are blaming the western diet for increasing levels of asthma amongst young people. A study carried out on children in Saudi Arabia by Professor Anthony Seaton from the University of St Andrews has found that asthma and allergy become more common the more fast food is eaten. According to the study, age, sex, social class, family size and previous infections did not affect an individuals’ chances of asthma, but eating fast-food, not drinking milk, and not eating vegetables, fruit, fibre, vitamin E and other minerals powerfully increases an individual’s chance of developing the condition. Children with the lowest vitamin E intake were 3 times more likely to develop asthma than better-nourished children.

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