Endo dysfunction Click to enlarge
Endo dysfunction Click to enlarge

Recent studies show that greater than 50% of overweight and obese adults do not exercise. This fact contributes to elevated endothelin (ET)-1[1], a protein, causing vasomotor dysfunction[2] [3]vasoconstriction, and increased vascular risk[4]. Regular aerobic exercise is a lifestyle strategy that reduces ET-1 mediated[5] vasoconstrictor [6] tone.

Caitlin Dow, Ph.D. Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Integrative Vascular Biology Laboratory Boulder, Colorado Research
Caitlin Dow, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Integrative Vascular Biology Laboratory
Boulder, Colorado Research

Since regular aerobic exercise is not a part of the sedentary lifestyle followed by most adults, researchers led by Caitlin Dow Ph.D., postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Colorado, Boulder, examined whether or not vitamin C is as beneficial to vascular health as aerobic exercise in lowering ET-1 system activity in overweight and obese adults. It is already known that vitamin C positively influences endothelial function.

Chair SleepingThe study included 35 sedentary, overweight, and obese adults. Of these, 20 individuals were selected to complete three months of a vitamin C (500 mg/day, timed-release) regimen; the other 15 individuals completed aerobic (walking) exercise training. Forearm blood flow measurements were taken before and after the two interventions. The researchers found vitamin C is as effective as walking in reducing ET-1 related arterial vessel constriction. Therefore, a vitamin C regimen is effective as a lifestyle strategy for reducing ET-1 mediated vasoconstriction

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Vitamin C: The Exercise Replacement? (2015, September 2). Retrieved September 9, 2015, from Newswise:



[1] The endothelium regulates local vascular tone and integrity through the coordinated release of vasoactive molecules. Secretion of endothelin-1 (ET-1) from the endothelium signals vasoconstriction and influences local cellular growth and survival. ET-1 has been implicated in the development and progression of vascular disorders such as atherosclerosis and hypertension.

[2] affecting diameter of blood vessels causing or influencing changes in the diameter of blood vessels in an inappropriate way

[3] Myocardial ischemia is known to be precipitated by a mismatch between oxygen demand and supply secondary to epicardial coronary artery stenosis (i.e. constriction.) The tendency for developing myocardial ischemia is greater in those with more severe obstructive epicardial CAD (coronary artery disease) and with microvascular dysfunction manifested as abnormal vasodilatory and vasoconstrictor function of the peripheral circulation.

[4] Atherosclerosis (also known as arteriosclerotic vascular disease or ASVD) is a specific form of arteriosclerosis in which an artery wall thickens as a result of invasion and accumulation of white blood cells (WBCs)(foam cell) and proliferation of intimal smooth muscle cell creating a fibro-fatty plaque.

[5] to act as a medium that transfers something from one place to another in the body

[6] causing narrowing of the blood vessels



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Captain Hank Quinlan, Owner, and Publisher, Chief Curmudgeon with Sam Borsalino, Assistant Publisher

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