Natural in at least 8 different forms, this vitamin is a great antioxidant. This vitamin is alternatively referred to as tocopherol but the more common name is vitamin E. Tocopherol is generic for the 8 variant forms of its natural occurrence as they are all different compounds but belong to the same group and differ only in a specific chain or side chain.
Vitamin E is another marginalized vitamin. Of course not by Vitaminfood, our select meal replacement products are impartial when it comes to vitamin and mineral inclusion. Vitaminfood delivers enough of everything that your body needs. But rather by bloggers and health influencers…Vitamin E just like vitamin K is not so often spoken off but it is an essential antioxidant among many other functions that it serves within the body.
It is fat-soluble and is taken up in the small intestine bound to fat carrier molecules. It is stored within the body in fat reserves and within the liver. This helps in covering short-medium dietary shortages. Of all the many different forms, only the alpha-tocopherol form is used in the body.
Some of the benefits of including adequate vitamin E in the diet include:
- Antioxidant properties
Tocopherol is an ester and is heterocyclic with the phenolic OH group. This OH group is the oxidation part of the compound and is the one that gives rise and the capacity to fulfill this basic role. The main role of vitamin E is to hunt down the free radicals, reactive oxygen and nitrogen species and to oxidize these to stable atoms and compounds.
By oxidizing them, it breaks the chain that progressively results in free radicals eventually leading to a build-up of oxidative stress. By preventing oxidative stress, other diseases especially chronic illnesses like cancer and cardiac complications that are greatly linked to oxidative stress are also kept at bay.
By limiting free radicals, it offers protection to the eye. Oxidative stress is linked to eye disorders related to defects of the lens.
It also protects the heart against coronary heart disease and congestive heart failure which are often caused by the accumulation of bad cholesterol within veins, atherosclerosis.
- Skin conditioning active
Anything that is an antioxidant has obvious benefits to the skin. Vitamin E is a super antioxidant that has the entire cosmetic industry swearing by it. The skin is kept safe by antioxidants. Free radicals will automatically cause inflammation and inflammation is the skin’s greatest enemy. Inflammation is the primary cause of acne and disruption of smoothness. So anything that effectively keeps of inflammation will obviously drive the skin-care industry nuts. Vitamin E is one such kind of compound.
The benefits to the skin include:
- Vitamin E has a powerful anti-inflammatory effect which slows down skin aging which manifests itself in the form of wrinkles
- It protects against the effects of toxins that arise from environmental pollution like carcinogenic smoke emitted as waste in highly industrial towns. These toxins get into direct contact with the skin causing negative reactions with the skin. Vitamin E is able to inhibit these reactions and control the extent of the damage caused.
- Vitamin E is also an excellent moisturizer and keeps the skin supple and moist. Dry skin is prone to crack and cleavage easily. This creates an opening in the physical barrier between the internal and external environments and exposes us to the risk of infection by the free entry of pathogens. Dry scaly skin is also not the best looking and some little moisture can go a long way into making it more desirable and attractive.
- Protects against the carcinogenic effects of UV radiation. UV causes cross-linking of proteins and the degeneration of fibroblasts. These two maintain the structure of the skin by synthesizing skin components.
- Vitamin E has wound healing properties according to the skin the ability to recover fully to its former glory even after an injury or a surgery causing a scar.
Vitamin E is also fairly absorbed through the skin making it a component in beauty products. Other nutrients that benefit the skin are not absorbed through the skin as well as vitamin E is and so this makes it more favored by the beauty industry whose products are mostly ointments for applying.
- Reproduction of epithelial cells.
Epithelial cells create the membrane lining of the soft tissues within the body, the mucous layer that lines our respiratory system (trachea, bronchi, bronchioles) and the alimentary canal (esophagus, stomach and intestines).
It also repletes the endothelial cells of blood vessels making sure that very little material adheres to the inner surface of these vessels. This maintains a smooth flow of blood and ensures the vessels are not clogged by platelet aggregation. It reduces the risk of an embolism (clot within a vessel) which causes insufficient blood and nutrient supply and leads to strokes.
- Improves immune function
Vitamin E modulates the functioning of T cells; a type of white blood cells. The effect of the vitamin as one of the greatest immunity modulators affects host susceptibility to infectious diseases and allergic reactions. Infections of the respiratory tract increase in case of a deficiency.
It affects the cell membrane efficiency and integrity (prevents the oxidation of the polyunsaturated fats in the structure of white blood cells), signal transduction and cell division. It also regulates inflammation caused by other immune cells.
Pneumonia, influenza and asthma patients are examples of people who would benefit from supplementation slightly above daily intake recommendations.
- Cell signaling
Vitamin E regulates signal transduction by various mechanisms that affect how the enzymes involved work. It could alter the binding properties or directly affect their translocation to plasma membranes thereby control the signals sent and their effection.
- Regulation of gene expression
Vitamin E by its effect on cell signaling and transduction is important in determining what signals get sent and which ones are actually acted upon by the cells. This affects gene expression through direct and indirect mechanisms.
In addition to this, it slows down aging if in adequate amounts. It modulates T cells whose dysregulation is linked to aging. Vitamin E is also the most important lipid-soluble antioxidant meaning that it plays a great role in hunting down free radicals, especially the reactive nitrogen species. This helps maintain the health of cells and slow down tissue-specific aging.
Cases of vitamin E deficiency are also rare primarily because of its wide bioavailability in a range of commonly consumed natural foods. It could also be because of the fact that it is fat-soluble hence stored in reserves within the body rather than being excreted regularly through renal regulation.
Causes of a deficiency could be fat malabsorption and premature birth.
Symptoms of a deficiency include:
- Susceptibility to infectious diseases because of the weakened immune system.
- Damage to the retina of the eye
- Skeletal myopathy
- Ataxia; loss of control of body movements
- Peripheral neuropathy; damage of the peripheral nerves.
Vitaminfood gives you all your required Vitamin E alongside the other vital nutrients and vitamins. Grab one today and forge the struggle of chasing vegetables or tracking nutrient intake. This also gives you a chance to gift another with Vitaminfood for life initiative. Get healthier with the right product, designed to get you to your goals.