A-Z of Vitamins: Vitamin E

We all know that vitamin E is good for us because we keep seeing it everywhere. If you are a woman then there is a good chance that you will have smeared some of this good stuff over various parts of your body at least once in your life, and even if you were a man, there is a good chance that you used some form of this after you have been lying in the sun for too long and caught sun burn. That’s the thing about vitamin E – it is very good for your skin!

In short, this special little vitamin helps to protect the actual membranes of the cells in your body, almost as if giving them an invisible force against the bad stuff out there.

Have you heard of antioxidants? Well, vitamin E is one of these too. We will take a closer look at these powerful little things later on but for now, you should take our word for it – these antioxidants are very good for you and in some cases can even prevent and help to fight against cancer!

Vitamin

Source: Flickr.com/photos/8047705@N02/5481406508/sizes/m/in/photostream/

When you get a cold or flu, viruses and bacteria are coming into your body and trying to attack it. When you don’t have enough vitamin E in your diet, the good bacteria (your army) will have a tough time trying to keep all the bad stuff away, and if you are lacking this powerful vitamin, you will more than likely notice that you are ill more often.

On top of that, vitamin E is good for preventing blood clots which is especially good for those that have suffered with related medical conditions in the past or currently. You must remember that you should always speak with a medical professional before you make any changes to your diet to ensure that you don’t do yourself more harm than good.

The average adult will need roughly 15mg of vitamin E daily, but most of this will be stuff that you have gotten from your food. You will find that this special vitamin is present in many of the foods that you will eat on a daily basis, such as:

  • Fortified foods, including breakfast cereals. Take a look at some of the packaging in your kitchen – we bet there is vitamin E in there somewhere!
  • Vegetable oils
  • Many nuts – brazil nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach – we have already discussed the greatness of spinach, and we still can’t talk about it enough!

So what happens if you don’t get enough vitamin E?

If you are a healthy person with a relatively balanced and healthy diet and you get a decent amount of physical exercise per week, having a deficiency of vitamin E is rather rare. There are certain conditions that this has been linked to however, and these include things such as Crohn’s Disease and cystic fibrosis.

Studies have been shown that the RIGHT amounts of vitamin E can actually be very good for you. There has been an active link found between increased vitamin E levels (such as a daily supplement) with a reduced risk of getting various heart conditions, but it is wise to remember that too much vitamin E will do you more harm than it will good.

As yet, there is no evidence to support any medical conditions with increased amounts of vitamin E but this is not to say that there are no adverse side effects – you should always make sure that you don’t get too much of a good thing.

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