Vitamin E has a fundamental role in protecting the body against the damaging effects of reactive oxygen species that are formed metabolically or encountered in the environment.
Vitamin E includes two classes of biologically active substances: the tocopherols and the tocotrienols.
Vitamin E is the most important lipid-soluble antioxidant in the cell. Located in the lipid portion of cell membranes, it protects unsaturated phospholipids of the membrane from oxidative degradation from highly reactive oxygen species and other free radicals.
Vitamin E is known to inhibit processes related to the development of atherosclerosis.
Dietary reference intakes of vitamin E
Infants 4-5 α-TE (mg)/day
Children 6-7 α-TE (mg)/day
Adolescents 11-15 α-TE (mg)/day
Adults 15 α-TE (mg)/day
Pregnant 15 α-TE (mg)/day
Lactating 19 α-TE (mg)/day
Vitamin E content of selected foods
Raisin bran, 1 cup (13.5 α-TE (mg))
Almonds, 1 oz (7.33 α-TE (mg))
Sunflower oil, 1 tbsp (5.59 α-TE (mg))
Mixed nuts, 1 oz (3.1 α-TE (mg))
Canola oil, 1 tbsp (2.39 α-TE (mg))
Peanut oil, 1 tbsp (2.12 α-TE (mg))
Corn and olive oil, 1 tbsp (1.94 α-TE (mg))
Apricots, canned, sweetened, ½ cup (1.55 α-TE (mg))
Cashews, 1 oz (0.26 α-TE (mg))
Symptoms of Vitamin E deficiency
Loss of deep tendon reflexes
Impaired vibratory and position sensation
Changes in balance and coordination
Signs of Vitamin E toxicity
Impaired bone mineralization
Impaired hepatic vitamin A storage
Prolonged blood coagulation