Part 2: Benefits of Vitamin E
Recent research shows that vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) may be an effective tool for slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s. The study which included 561 patients was a double-blind, placebo controlled clinical trial. The results showed that those taking 2000 IUs of vitamin E had a 19 percent slower progression of Alzheimer’s over the course of a year when compared to a placebo group. This works out to a six month delay over two years. The study also indicated that vitamin E might allow patients to remain independent for longer when using vitamin E as a treatment.
While these results seem simple, there is actually a broad range of types of vitamin E. In total there are eight different types of vitamin E. The two main groups of vitamin E are tocopherols and tocotrienols. Then each group is broken down further into four types: alpha, beta, gamma, and delta.
So which vitamin E is the best? Well, ideally a full range of vitamin E types should be consumed as each type has its own biological benefit. The only thing to avoid is synthetic vitamin E. Natural vitamin E is always listed with a “d-” before the chemical nomenclature. While synthetic vitamin E is listed with a “dl-“. Synthetic vitamins are no good because your body is unable to use synthetic vitamins as effectively, if at all.
The absolute best way to get your vitamin E intake is through your food. The tocopherol subgroup of vitamin E can be found in nuts and leafy greens. While the tocotrienols can be found in palm oil, rice bran and barley oils. Using both supplements and foods high in vitamin E can be very beneficial. However, caution is necessary as many supplements use extremely high and disproportionate doses of the different vitamin E subgroups. Always get your vitamin E supplements from a trusted source.