Vitamins>Vitamin E

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  • auto;mso-list:l2 level1 lfo1;tab-stops:list .5in'>Vitamin E may reduce the risk of heart disease
  • auto;mso-list:l2 level1 lfo1;tab-stops:list .5in'>Vitamin E may help lower the risk of cancer

How it works

Vitamin E is an anti-oxidant vitamin, helping to neutralize potentially damaging free radicals in the body. It is particularly important for helping to keep cell walls in good condition and for the healthy maintenance of the skin, nerves, muscles, red blood cells, body circulation, and heart. Vitamin E improves the activity of vitamin A in the body, and, unlike other fat-soluble vitamins, seems to be stored for only a short time in the body - indicating the need for very regular intakes.

Absorption helpers Vitamin C and selenium help the action of vitamin E in the body.

Absorption inhibitors The drug cholestyramine, taken to reduce raised cholesterol levels, inhibits absorption of Vitamin E. Excess intakes of iron, copper, and manganese can all reduce vitamin E in the body as can trans-fats in some margarine and processed food, air pollution, and the contraceptive pill.

Taking vitamin E supplements

The RDA for vitamin E (10mg) is equivalent to 27g of sunflower seeds. The most effective supplement form of vitamin E is d-alpha tocopherol; avoid dl-alpha tocopherol, which is not as effective. The safe upper limit, showing no short or long term adverse effects, is 800mg a day. Optimum nutritionists recommend 100-1000mg a day for adults as a preventive and therapeutic dose.

Combining supplements Products with 25mcg of selenium for each 200mg of vitamin E will increase its potency. Take any supplements containing iron at least eight hours before or after vitamin E supplements to avoid vitamin E destruction.

Precautions When taken by people with vitamin K deficiency, high intakes of vitamin E can adversely affect blood-clotting mechanisms. People with high blood pressure, rheumatic heart disease, or ischeamic heart disease should only take high intakes under close medical supervision.

Why take this supplement?
 

People with a diet high in polyunsaturated fats that includes a high proportion of margarine, vegetable oils, nuts, and seeds, may need vitamin E supplements as much as people who cannot absorb fat. Vitamin E may also be appropriate for people with a family history of heart disease, those exposed to pollution, and anyone interested in slowing down the ageing process. The following signs may also indicate a need for this supplement:

  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Exhaustion after light exercise
  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Easy bruising
  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Slow wound healing
  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Varicose veins
  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Loss of muscle tone
  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Lack of drive
  • auto;mso-list:l3 level1 lfo2;tab-stops:list .5in'>Infertility

Therapeutic uses

  • auto;mso-list:l1 level1 lfo3;tab-stops:list .5in'>Heart disease Vitamin E supplements of 80-100g may lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, and angina by reducing the formation of atherosclerosis plaques on artery walls.
  • auto;mso-list:l1 level1 lfo3;tab-stops:list .5in'>Cancer Good intakes of vitamin E may help protect against some forms of cancer, especially of the lung and the cervix.
  • auto;mso-list:l1 level1 lfo3;tab-stops:list .5in'>Cataracts People who take vitamin E supplements may have a lower incidence of developing cataracts.
  • auto;mso-list:l1 level1 lfo3;tab-stops:list .5in'>Infections Vitamin E supplements may enhance the action of the immune system to fight infection.
  • auto;mso-list:l1 level1 lfo3;tab-stops:list .5in'>Osteoarthritis Vitamin E may help to relieve the pain associated with osteoarthritis, possibly through its action as an anti-inflammatory agent.
  • auto;mso-list:l1 level1 lfo3;tab-stops:list .5in'>Male fertility Intakes of 600mg of vitamin E daily have been shown to significantly benefit numbers and also help to improve male fertility.

Chemical names

  • auto;mso-list:l5 level1 lfo4;tab-stops:list .5in'>Tocopherol: alpha, beta, gamma, and delta

Preparations

  • auto;mso-list:l0 level1 lfo5;tab-stops:list .5in'>Capsules
  • auto;mso-list:l0 level1 lfo5;tab-stops:list .5in'>Tablets
  • auto;mso-list:l0 level1 lfo5;tab-stops:list .5in'>Liquid
  • auto;mso-list:l0 level1 lfo5;tab-stops:list .5in'>Oil
  • auto;mso-list:l0 level1 lfo5;tab-stops:list .5in'>Soft gel capsules

RDA for adults
 

10mg

Top sources of vitamin E mg/100g of food

  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Wheatgerm oil137mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Sunflower seed oil49mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Sunflower seeds37mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Hazelnuts25mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Almonds24mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Pine nuts14mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Sweet potato4mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Avocado3mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Muesli3mg/100g
  • auto;mso-list:l4 level1 lfo6;tab-stops:list .5in'>Spinach2mg/100g