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What is Vitamin E and why you may need supplementation

Vitamin E is an essential vitamin for the body, because it has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory proprieties. It also helps to control bad cholesterol and helps improve fertility, because it plays an important role in hormone production.

Although this vitamin is found in various foods, it's the main sources are foods of a vegetable origin, like whole grain cereal, sunflower seed, almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, avocados or olive oil, for example. However, Vitamin E can also be consumed in supplements in the form of capsules, but you should only take them under the guidance of a doctor or nutritionist.

What is Vitamin E and why you may need supplementation

Why is Vitamin E important

Vitamin E, also known as alpha-tocopherol, is one of the most important antioxidants, and its benefits include:

  • Balances cholesterol levels;
  • Improves skin and hair health as it provides integrity to the skin and cell walls;
  • Increases skin firmness and prevents wrinkles;
  • Improves wound healing;
  • Prevents aging;
  • Improves physical endurance and muscle strength;
  • Fights infertility as it contributes hormonal production

In addition, vitamin E may also be useful for improving the immune system and brain function.

When should you take Vitamin E supplementation

As a dietary supplement, vitamin E can be used to maintain healthy skin, increase its elasticity and prevent wrinkles, improve blood circulation, help control cholesterol, fight free radicals in the body and prevent aging. This vitamin also strengthens the immune system and can be recommended for couples who are having fertility problems.

In some cases where cholesterol levels must be controlled, 1000 mg a day of tocopherol may be part of the clinical treatment.

In premature infants, vitamin E deficiency may cause retinopathy of prematurity and cerebral hemorrhage, so in these cases 10 to 50 mg of vitamin E daily is administered under medical supervision.

Vitamin E in capsules

Vitamin E supplementation in capsules is usually done at a dose of 3 to 15 mg per day. However, it is recommended that its use be directed by a physician or nutritionist, who can better adapt the doses according to the needs of each person.

Vitamin E in capsules is found in pharmacies or natural products stores.

What is Vitamin E and why you may need supplementation

Symptoms of Vitamin E deficiency

Lack of vitamin E is rare and is usually associated with poor absorption of it by the intestine, and may cause reduced reflexes, gait difficulties, double vision, muscle weakness, and headache.

There is a greater concern for this type of deficiency in newborn babies because during pregnancy there is little passage of this vitamin through the placenta. However, in most cases, breast milk is sufficient to suppress the babies needs for vitamin E.

Toxic effects of vitamin E

Hypervitaminosis E can cause bleeding in individuals who take anticoagulant drugs, so it should not be consumed in these cases, unless it's indicated by a medical practitioner.

Does Vitamin E cause you to put on weight?

There is no evidence that vitamin E in capsules at the recommended daily dose causes weight gain. However, you should be careful with the foods you consume, since some of the ones that are good sources of this vitamin can also increase your daily intake of calories.

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