The Complex Results of New Vitamin E Studies

hh-13.jpgHeart health is just one of the many benefits from the new discoveries surfacing about vitamin E.

Most people think of vitamin E as one vitamin, but recent studies have discovered that it is actually a compound of nutrients, found separately or together, made up of tocopherols, and tocotrienols.

The four tocopherols have been identified for some time. These are known as alpha-, beta-, gamma- and delta-tocopherol. These are commonly found in oils like wheat germ, sunflower and soy.

Fats, oils and fatty acids break down over time into rancid forms filled with dangerous free radicals that damage your cell walls, and can even destroy the cell’s DNA. This breakdown is aggravated by environmental pollutants like car fumes, manufacturing waste, even pesticides and herbicides. Vitamin E in its ‘tocopherol’ forms has long been known as a fat-soluble (meaning it can be stored in the body) antioxidant capable of binding with these free radicals to prevent the oxidation of fats.

Now, scientists at Japan’s Kyoto Prefect University of Medicine have discovered variant forms of the E family in palm fruits (Elaeis guineensis) that have forty to sixty times the antioxidant capacity of tocopherols — the tocotrienols.

Tocotrienols, the most powerful antioxidants identified to date, are proving to be highly effective in preventing the blood vessel adhesions that lead to arterial plaques, which then lead to — you guessed it — heart attacks. This is excellent news for anyone who suffers from atherosclerosis. However, palm oil, the best source of tocotrienols, is not common in American diets. Fortunately, supplemental forms of tocotrienols are now available.

In addition to its powerful antioxidant abilities and as in preventing arterial plaque formation, studies indicate that tocotrienols may also be useful in:

  • Protecting against neurological damage
  • Prevention of strokes
  • Avoidance of cancer

Three out of four cardiologists recommend vitamin E to their patients, and most of the doctors take it themselves. Now, they have something even more powerful to recommend.

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