Document Detail

Physical activity and the risk of pneumonia in male smokers administered vitamin E and beta-carotene.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16572378     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
It has been proposed that moderate exercise may enhance the immune system. We evaluated whether physical activity at work or at leisure is associated with the risk of pneumonia, and whether the antioxidants vitamin E and beta-carotene affect pneumonia risk in physically active people. A cohort of 16 804 male smokers aged 50-69 years and working at study entry was drawn from the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention (ATBC) Study, which examined the effect of vitamin E, 50 mg/day, and beta-carotene, 20 mg/day, on lung and other cancers. Physical activity at work, and the type of leisure-time exercise, were recorded at study entry. We retrieved the first occurrence of hospital-treated pneumonia during a 3-year follow-up from the National Hospital Discharge Register (133 cases). Physical activity at work and at leisure had no association with the risk of pneumonia. In participants with physically loading jobs, neither vitamin E nor beta-carotene affected the risk of pneumonia. In participants carrying out moderate or heavy exercise at leisure, beta-carotene had no effect, but vitamin E reduced the risk of pneumonia by 50% (95% CI: 16-70%). Previously, exercise has been shown to affect diverse laboratory measures of the immune system which are, however, only surrogate markers for the resistance to infections. The lack of association between physical activity and the risk of pneumonia observed in our study emphasizes the problem of drawing conclusions from surrogate end points. The finding that vitamin E reduced the risk of pneumonia in persons carrying out leisure-time exercise warrants further study.
H Hemilä; J Kaprio; D Albanes; J Virtamo
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural    
Journal Detail:
Title:  International journal of sports medicine     Volume:  27     ISSN:  0172-4622     ISO Abbreviation:  Int J Sports Med     Publication Date:  2006 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2006-03-30     Completed Date:  2006-08-31     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8008349     Medline TA:  Int J Sports Med     Country:  Germany    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  336-41     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Public Health, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
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MeSH Terms
Antioxidants / administration & dosage
Cohort Studies
Dietary Supplements*
Exercise / physiology*
Finland / epidemiology
Follow-Up Studies
Leisure Activities
Middle Aged
Motor Activity / physiology*
Pneumonia / epidemiology*,  immunology,  prevention & control
Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
Risk Factors
Smoking / adverse effects*
Vitamin E / administration & dosage
beta Carotene / administration & dosage
Grant Support
CN-45 035/CN/NCI NIH HHS; N01-CN-45 165/CN/NCI NIH HHS
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antioxidants; 1406-18-4/Vitamin E; 7235-40-7/beta Carotene

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