The health benefits of vitamin E range include skin enhancement, wound healing, immune function, and protection against various diseases. Also called alpha-tocopherol, vitamin E is believed to reduce cholesterol and plaque buildup, reducing the risk of stroke and coronary artery disease (CAD).
Vitamin E is an essential nutrient, which means the body needs it but cannot produce it on its own. However, vitamin E deficiency is rare because it is fat-soluble - it is stored in the fat tissues for up to six months before getting depleted. Common food sources include nuts, poultry, wheat products, and various vegetable oils, particularly wheat germ oil. It is also available as a health supplement. Other health benefits of vitamin E include the following:
One of the best health benefits of vitamin E is its antioxidant capacity. Antioxidants help remove free radicals - unstable compounds that damage cell structure, increasing the risk of cancer and weakening the immune system. This also protects against eye diseases, diabetes and pancreatic disorders, and Alzheimer's Disease.
Vitamin E prevents cholesterol from being converted to plaque, which thickens the blood vessels and leads to stroke and heart disease. It also thins the blood and improves blood flow even with plaque buildup on the artery walls. Studies show that vitamin E from foods can reduce the risk of stroke in postmenopausal women, although further studies are needed to support this claim.
Skin and lip protection are also well-known health benefits of vitamin E. Vitamin E helps retain moisture in the skin and prevents dryness, itchiness, and chapping. It also protects against UV radiation and speeds up wound healing. It can be applied topically and is a main ingredient in most creams, lotions, and sunscreens.
Anti-inflammatory and pain relief
Studies suggest that vitamin E can both relieve and prevent osteoarthritis. Its effects are similar to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which are traditionally used to relieve arthritic pain. It also improves joint mobility, preventing gout and buildup of waste material in the joints.
IMPORTANT: Vitamin E is considered a dietary supplement, which means it is not as strictly regulated as conventional drugs. Additives in some products (such as starch, silica, and gluten) can inhibit the health benefits of vitamin E and even be harmful to your health. Buy only products that are GMP-compliant and make sure they do not contain any artificial colors or flavorings.
Health Benefits of Vitamin E