Vitamin E benefits

Foods are filled with a combination of different nutrients that our bodies need to survive; it’s almost as if they were designed just for that reason…to keep us alive! Each nutrient plays a different role in the body. One general category of nutrients is vitamins; within this category, there are a variety of vitamins that each do their own thing for the body. In general, a vitamin is an organic compound that is required by an organism in tiny amounts. That definition doesn’t say much about what each vitamin—vitamin A, C, D, E, K, and the B vitamins—does. To help out with that a little, this article will discuss everything about vitamin E.

What is Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is actually a family of fat-soluble vitamins, and acts as a powerful antioxidant in the body. An antioxidant is a compound that fights damaging free radicals by neutralizing them. Free radicals are disease-causing agents that can build up in the body. When we continuously consume foods with antioxidants, in this case vitamin E, our bodies can fight off these disease-causing agents. There are 8 different forms of vitamin E; d-alpha tocopherol is the most active in our bodies. Vitamin E is found in vegetable oils, nuts, and green leafy vegetables. Aside from being an antioxidant, vitamin E helps to prevent blood clotting by thinning the blood.

Health Benefits of Vitamin E
All of the benefits of vitamin E are due to the antioxidant and blood thinning properties. Some benefits of vitamin E include: immune system booster, protection of the nerves and muscles, protection against eye disorders (like inflammation of the eye tissues and cataracts), defense against rheumatoid arthritis and possibly other types of arthritis, asthma, and various diabetes-related complications. Other benefits, along with their explanations, are listed below.

Prevents heart disease and cancer
Since vitamin E is a very powerful antioxidant, it protects the cells against the damage that free radicals can impose on them. Free radical damage can lead to the development of heart disease and cancer.

Anti-aging effects on the skin

Another beneficial property due to the antioxidant power of vitamin E is the effects that it has on the skin and other parts of the body with respect to aging. The skin benefits to a great extent. In fact, many skin care products contain vitamin E. Vitamin E helps to regulate levels of vitamin A in the body, which is, in itself, beneficial for the skin; it can help protect against ultraviolet radiation that can harm the skin. The anti-aging effect on the skin is marvelous.

Protection of cell membranes

This, again, is due to the antioxidant properties of vitamin E.

Keeps the blood circulation healthy
Since vitamin E works to prevent blood clots, it helps keep the circulatory system moving and working properly. A healthy circulation system is essential.

Dietary Intake Recommendations

400 IU (international units) is the UL (tolerable upper level) of vitamin E. Getting more than this daily can increase the risk of death for an individual. However, this typically only happens through supplementation; you can’t really get too much vitamin E from foods. The main problem is that the blood becomes too thin, coagulation (blood clotting) completely gets thrown off the wayside, and the patient will hemorrhage, or bleed to death.

Medication Interactions
It is feasible that vitamin E, when taken in supplement form, can interact with certain medications. This is why it’s always good to talk with your doctor before starting on the supplement. Such medications include: anticoagulant and antiplatelet medications, simvastatin and niacin (other antioxidants), chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.

Last updated on Oct 3rd, 2010 and filed under Vitamins and Minerals. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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