Vitamin E

It is fat soluble vitamin.

Vitamin E is an antioxidant in nature and helps to protect the cell membrane from damage caused by free radicals and also prevents the oxidation of LDL cholesterol. It is composed of a group of substances called tocopherols which are divided into different forms like alpha, beta, and gamma.

Importance of vitamin E

It is necessary for maintenance of structure and functions of skeletal, cardiac and smooth muscles in body. mIt also helps in formation of RBCs and storage of vitamin A, K, iron and selenium. It has positive effect on immune system and helps to reduce the symptoms of cancer, Alzheimer's disease and some diabetes related damage especially for eyes.

Benefits of Vitamin E

  • It is an antioxidant. It protects the body tissue from damage caused by free radicals.

Other benefits may include:

  • It helps to keep the immune system healthy.
  • It is important in the formation of RBCs and widen the blood vessels and prevents blood clotting.
  • It also helps in preventing cancer, heart disease, dementia, liver disease and stroke.

Sources of Vitamin E

It can be taken in natural or synthetic form. But the best way to take vitamin E is natural food.

There are many food sources from where we can take vitamin E which are given below:

  • Vegetable oils like wheat germ, sunflower, safflower, corn, and soybean oils.
  • Eggs
  • Vegetables like spinach and broccoli.
  • Nuts
  • Fortified cereals, fruit juices margarine and other foods.

Deficiency of vitamin E

It is rare in humans. But sometimes people who are not able to absorb vitamin E show symptoms of deficiency of vitamin E. Premature and very low birth weight infants are at risk of vitamin E deficiency.

General signs and Symptoms may include:-

Fatigue, premature ageing, miscarriage, muscle weakness, slow tissue healing, greasy stools, chronic diarrhea and inability to secrete bile.

Side effects of Vitamin E

Likely it is safe to use but in higher dose it may cause complications:

  • Bleeding, serious bleeding in brain, headache, fatigue, nausea.
  • Topically it may result in irritation on skin.
  • With other medicines like blood thinners vitamin E should not be taken.
  • High level of Vitamin E may increase the risk of birth defects.
  • Low level may lead to hemolytic anemia.

Dose of Vitamin E

Dose of vitamin is taken according to age:

Infants

  • 0 to 6 months: 4 mg/day
  • 7 to 12 months: 5 mg/day

Children

  • 1 to 3 years: 6 mg/day
  • 4 to 8 years: 7 mg/day
  • 9 to 13 years: 11 mg/day

Adults

  • 14 and older: 15 mg/day

Pregnant women

  • 15 mg/day
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