The benefits of vitamin E
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that is carried around the body by the blood and is stored in the fatty tissues and the liver. It is one of the natural antioxidants that help protects cells from free radicals (substances that damage and kill off healthy cells). This has lead some doctors to believe that vitamin E can help slow down the aging process.
Vitamin E is essential for healthy heart function and circulation by protecting our cells and helping prevent the build up of plaque in the arteries. It also thins the blood to help prevent heart disease. Recent studies have shown that vitamin E supplementation significantly lowers the risk of heart disease. Some doctors believe that it can protect the heart from strokes and heart attacks by reducing the harmful bad cholesterol in our arteries. Vitamin E has also been shown to increase the body’s immune response and therefore protect against disease and cancer.
Skin: Helps with condition, regeneration and youthful appearance. Helps heal skin and it can prevent thick scar formation and accelerate the healing of burns.
Blood pressure: Vitamin E has been shown in some studies to help reduce blood pressure.
Cell Respiration: Maximizes the availability of oxygen to organs and muscles. Some athletes take this supplement for this reason.
Reproduction: Essential for a healthy reproductive system.
Eye health: Cataracts appear to be formed by the oxidation of proteins in the lens of the eye, which may be prevented by antioxidants such as alpha-tocopherol. To date, observational studies have examined the association between vitamin E consumption and the incidence and severity of cataracts.
Vitamin E supplements
Most of us will get all the vitamin E we need in our daily diet but if you feel you need extra always discuss your individual requirements with your doctor. Choose natural vitamin E sometimes labeled (d-alpha) over synthetic ones labeled (dl-alpha).
If you decide to take a vitamin E supplement take it at the same time each day with a meal. The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) is 10mg. A typical therapeutic daily dose is 67mg to 670mg but doses of 200mg to 400mg are most common. Daily intake should not exceed 800mg. Multivitamins usually contain about 40 mg of vitamin E and even at this fairly low dosage it has been shown to indicate some protection against cancer in smokers.
Signs of deficiency
There are no real deficiency signs but the life of red blood cells may be shortened. People who eat a balanced diet are not at risk of deficiency.
High doses (above 670mg daily) can be toxic and cause blood thinning, so should not be used by people taking anti-clotting medication such as Warfarin or heparin. People with high blood pressure should start on a low dose and increase gradually under professional supervision. Diabetics should have their dosage monitored carefully as vitamin E can affect insulin requirements.
sources of vitamin E:
Wheat-germ oil is an exceptional source, eggs, almond oil, corn oil, cottonseed oil, olive oil, palm oil, peanut oil, safflower oil, soybean oil, whole grains, whole-wheat flour and grains, nuts and seeds especially almonds and hazelnuts, sunflower oil, soya beans, avocados, pulses and beans, margarines and leafy green vegetables.
What is meant by the term RDA?
RDA is the Recommended Daily Allowance that a government determines are the bare minimum amount of vitamins and minerals needed to prevent serious deficiency. It should not be confused with maximum safe daily dose (MSDD).