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Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin found in many foods, fats, and oils. It is also an antioxidant. Antioxidants are substances that destroy free radicals -- harmful compounds in the body that damage DNA (genetic material) and even cause cell death. Free radicals are believed to contribute to aging as well as the development of a number of health problems, including heart disease and cancer. Antioxidants provide some protection against these conditions and also help reduce the damage caused by toxic chemicals and pollutants.

Vitamin E is also important in the formation of red blood cells and it helps the body to use vitamin K.

Main Fuctions of Vitamin E:

  • affects the synthesis of hemoglobin
  • antioxidant protecting cellular membranes from oxidative damage by preventing lipid oxidation, especially the peroxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids, cholesterol and other free radicals
  • essential for fertility and reproduction
  • involved in red blood cell formation
  • limits the oxidation of low density lipoproteins (LDL)-cholesterol ("bad" cholesterol)  [which causes blockages in coronary arteries that may lead to atherosclerosis and heart attacks]
  • may block the formation of nitrosamines [carcinogens formed in the stomach from nitrites consumed in the diet]
  • may protect against the development of cancers by enhancing immune function 
  • prevents breakdown of body tissues
  • protects vitamin A and essential fatty acids from oxidation in the body cells 
  • synthesis and maintenance of red blood cells and their constituents

 

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