Vitamin E is not an ordinary vitamin. It’s a potent antioxidant that your liver uses to detox naturally. It’s also essential for a healthy skin, and its free radicals scavenging capacity makes it very interesting in cancer prevention. While its name leads us to think of a single substance, vitamin E describes a group of vitamins, each having their unique function.
Health benefits of vitamin E
Oxidative stress protection: Oxygen is a two-sided blade; we need it to stay alive, but it can also damage the cell structures. This is called oxidative stress. With many other antioxidants such as vitamin C, glutathione, selenium and vitamin B3, vitamin E helps to reduce this phenomenon.
Healthy skin promotion: When applied to the skin, vitamin E has the power to protect it from sun damage. A diet including foods rich in vitamin E is also a good way to protect the skin from free radicals and UV light as the vitamin migrates to the skin cell membrane.
Bladder cancer protection: According to a study presented at the American Association of Cancer Research, eating vitamin E rich foods can reduce your risk of bladder cancer by up to 50%. In the case of bladder cancer protection, studies show that supplements works as well as eating vitamin E rich foods.
Alzheimer and prostate cancer protection: A specific fraction of vitamin E appears to promote the death of some cancerous cells. This phenomenon is particularly true for prostate cancer where there’s a direct link between the action of the vitamin E and the self-destruction of cancerous cells. High intake of vitamin E rich foods can also reduce the risk of Alzheimer of up to 67%. Vitamin E supplement, however are not as efficient to prevent those two diseases.
Anti-inflammatory and cardioprotective effects: Some particular vitamins in the E group are especially good at fighting inflammation, which has led researchers to think that it could also have protective effects on the cardiovascular system. As for the Alzheimer and prostate cancer protection, the anti-inflammatory effects are only observed with vitamin E rich foods consumption.
Best vitamin E food source
Dark leafy greens
It’s important to note that vitamin E is soluble in fat. This means that adding a tiny bit of fat, like extra virgin olive oil, to your vegetables can help you absorbs it. Vitamin E is also quite sensitive to air and to processing. Choosing the freshest whole foods and avoiding unnecessary air contact is the best way to protect the vitamin E content of your food.