The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) released a report on April 11th reviewing the emerging science of antioxidants and their potential for disease protection. As summarized by the Council for Responsible Nutrition, although the report did not conclude that scientific evidence is sufficiently consistent to permit recommended intakes based on disease prevention, it did recognize the wide range of safe intakes for antioxidant vitamins and issued higher Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) for vitamins C and E. The new RDAs for antioxidant nutrients are: vitamin C (75 milligrams (mg) for women and 90 mg for men), vitamin E (15 mg), and selenium (55 micrograms (mcg)).
The report stated that there is "reason to expect that the antioxidant vitamins (C and E) should decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease." The report concluded that vitamin E does inhibit LDL oxidation (a causative agent for cardiovascular disease) and could also affect the health of arteries in other ways. The report also noted that it is reasonable to expect that vitamin C would reduce oxidative damage to the eye, thus lessening the risk of cataracts and other conditions. The NAS report also established tolerable upper intake levels (ULs) for vitamin C (2,000 mg), vitamin E (1,000 mg) and selenium (400 mcg). ULs for adults are set to protect the most sensitive individuals of the general population.