Vitamin E is the name for a set of compounds that are fat- soluble. It can be found in dietary supplements or in food sources such as vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, green leafy vegetables, and fortified cereals. Vitamin E is known to participate in and improve metabolic processes in the body.
Vitamin E can help to treat and prevent certain diseases, as well as promote general health. It is known to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and enhance the immune system. These functions, in turn, can prevent or treat disorders of the eye, heart disease, mental decline, and cancer.
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Vitamin E and Prevention of Eye Disorders Some causes of vision loss in elderly people are cataracts and macular degeneration, or MD. These conditions seem to be due to the buildup of increased oxidative stress. Nutrients that are antioxidants help to counteract the damaging effects. The a... more
Some causes of vision loss in elderly people are cataracts and macular degeneration, or MD. These conditions seem to be due to the buildup of increased oxidative stress. Nutrients that are antioxidants help to counteract the damaging effects. The antioxidant function of vitamin E helps to combat macular degeneration and cataracts and improve vision.
High doses of vitamin E have been shown to possibly decrease the chances of having disease of the heart. Coronary heart disease, or CHD, can be delayed or prevented because vitamin E helps prevent the creation of blood clots that tend to lead to venous thromboembolism or heart attacks. Vitamin E also stops or slows down the oxidation or development of LDL cholesterol, which is said to be a factor in heart disease.
Exposure to toxins like pollution, radiation, chemicals from food breakdown, and cigarette smoke produces free radicals in the body. These free radicals can cause damage and harm to cells and lead to certain forms of cancer. Antioxidants work to fight off the damaging effects of free radicals and can prevent cancer cells from appearing and growing. As an antioxidant, vitamin E can fight off cancer.
It also can fight off cancer by hindering the creation of harmful nitrosamines that are made from the breakdown of nitrites in certain foods. Nitrosamines have been known to cause cancer in the body and vitamin E prevents them from forming.
Because vitamin E can improve the function of the immune system, the body is better able to fight off certain health problems that can lead to cancer, and if cancer is present, it can help fight off the tumors and prevent their growth.
Use of vitamin E has been shown to possibly decrease cancers of the bladder, colon, prostate, and breast.
Vitamin E is often used topically or orally for skin issues like acne. The Bastyr Center of Natural Health at Bastyr University recommends oral vitamin E to help eczema, based on study results. You will also find that this vitamin is in many lotions and creams because it has such great skin benefits.
Vitamin E can possibly help with mental decline. The brain has a lot of fatty acids located in the neuron membranes. This, along with an increased need for oxygen can lead to free radical development. It is theorized that when free radicals cause damage to the neurons over a period of time, diseases such as Alzheimer’s and other cognitive diseases occur.
Taking antioxidants through supplements or food sources has been shown to decrease the effects of free radical damage to the brain. Vitamin E and its antioxidant properties can help to decrease cognitive decline in the brain.
Recommended daily allowances of vitamin E range from 4 mg daily for newborns 0- 6 months to 15 mg daily for those who are 14 years of age and older.
One thing to keep in mind is that being that it is a fat- soluble vitamin, fat is necessary for absorption of vitamin E. Take the supplement with food that contains some sort of fat, preferable a healthy type such as mono- or poly- unsaturated fats.
As usual, talk to your health care provider if you are unsure what the proper amount is appropriate for your situation and in order to avoid any side effects.
Side effects are unlikely when ingesting vitamin E from food sources. Long term intake of supplements in high doses can lead to certain health issues such as bleeding, hemorrhagic stroke, and can interrupt the coagulation of blood.
Because of the possible side effects, people taking certain medications should take caution with vitamin E supplements. Antiplatelet and anticoagulant medications can increase the chances of bleeding and its effects. When taken with other antioxidants, levels of HDL, the good type of cholesterol, can decrease. For that reason, people taking niacin or Simvastatin should be cautious with vitamin E.
Vitamin E can also interfere with the effects of radiotherapy and chemotherapy, so speak with your health care provider if going through cancer treatment.
|Unlikely In Recomended Dosage|
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|Coronary Heart Disease Prevention|