, Volume 25, Issue 3, pp 313–328 | Cite as

Obesity, cardiovascular disease, and role of vitamin C on inflammation: a review of facts and underlying mechanisms

  • Mohammed S. ElluluEmail author


Obesity means the accumulation of excessive fat that may interfere with the maintenance of optimal state of health. Obesity causes cardiac and vascular disease through well-known mediators such as hypertension, type-2 diabetes mellitus, and dyslipidemia, but there are evidences for other mediators such as chronic inflammation, oxidative stress, and thrombosis. The decreased levels of antioxidants factors and nitric oxide predispose to further cardiovascular adverse events. To reduce the risks, antioxidants can help by neutralizing the free radicals and protecting from damage by donating electrons. Having the capacity, vitamin C protects from oxidative stress, prevention of non-enzymatic glycosylation of proteins, and enhances arterial dilation through its effect on nitric oxide release. It also decreases lipid peroxidation, and alleviates inflammation. The anti-inflammatory property of vitamin C could be attributed to ability to modulate the NF-kB DNA binding activity and down-regulation in the hepatic mRNA expression for the interleukins and tumor factors.


Obesity Cardiovascular disease Metabolic syndrome Inflammation Oxidative stress Thrombosis Nitric oxide Antioxidant Vitamin C Ascorbic acid 



Body mass index


Blood pressure


Coronary heart disease


C reactive protein


Cardiovascular disease


Diastolic blood pressure


Fasting blood glucose


Free fatty acids


High density lipoprotein




Impaired glucose tolerance




Low density lipoprotein


Macrophage chemoattractant protein-1




Myocardial infarction


Nuclear factor kB


National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey


Nitric oxide


Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1


Randomized controlled trial


Reactive oxygen species


Systolic blood pressure


Single-nucleotide polymorphisms


Type-2 diabetes mellitus


Total cholesterol




Tumor necrosis factor alpha


Waist circumference


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

There are no significant competing professional or personal interests that might influence the performance or presentation of the work described in this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Faculty of Medicine and Health SciencesUniversiti Putra Malaysia (UPM)SerdangMalaysia
  2. 2.Clinical Nutrition SpecialistGazaPalestine

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