Nobody was aware of Vitamin E before 1922. It was in 1922 at the University of California in Berkeley a research physician Fr. Herbert M Evans along with his assistant Katherin S Bishop found Factor X an element that could help rats produce healthy pups. Prior to finding Factor X food constituent rats were growing well while feeding a special semipurified diet. But surprisingly for all female pregnancies, the unborn pups were dying in the womb itself. So, when the diet was included with lettuce and gradually with wheat germ, the pregnant rats were producing healthy pups. That means there was something missing from their diet earlier that lettuce and wheat germ could fulfill. As a matter of fact, nobody was aware what exactly was it. That is the origin of the discovery of Vitamin E. That incident was more than enough to keep their curiosity intact.
Thus doctors, and researchers Evans and Bishop were curious and eager to work more in this direction to come to a conclusion. It was evident to them by then that Factor X was there in lettuce. It had to be there in the lipid extract of lettuce. Therefore, whatever this substance was, it had to be fat soluble. On a parallel note, Dr. Bennett Sure was also working on the same lines in 1924 finds rats becoming sterile because of some substance missing in their diet. Although he was doing an independent research at the University of Arkansas both the research works were leading to the same conclusion. While the name Vitamin E was first given by Dr. Sure in 1924, Dr. Evans also called it the same in 1925. But this discovery was at a very nascent stage for next 10 years.
Vitamin E Was Not Known Before 1922
Nobody could firmly announce its chemical structure. Neither were there any standard sources of Vitamin E nor was a method to extract it or for that sake analyze it. It was only a decade later in 1936 that Dr. Evans and his team could extract an alcohol compound that was quite near to the properties of Vitamin E. And then they were able to arrive at its chemical formula and chemical name. It was alpha-tocopherol. Their research was further able to evolve beta and gamma tocopherols. Our body is capable to break multiple compounds into a single form. One of the best examples is beta-carotene that our body converts to vitamin A. But that doesn’t happen in case of Vitamin E. There are 8 different compounds that constitute its family. It is a combination of four tocopherols and four tocotrienols. Interestingly all 8 are there in our food.
The four tocopherols are alpha, beta, gamma, and delta. So are the four tocotrienols. It is obviously their molecular structures that differentiates them despite their molecules shape being similar. The form and dose of Vitamin E are very important to understand to draw the exact benefits. Because even a minor variance in its form and dose makes a big difference. Even for a similar cause, the dose will vary from person to person depending on each individual’s unique biochemistry. The benefits of taking vitamin E are many, but the form and dose, in which it is taken, make a great difference. Every individual has a unique biochemistry in his/her body, so one “standard” dose will not help everyone. It is one of the best antioxidants. It helps in maintaining good health, avoiding chronic diseases, and delaying the aging process.
Vitamin E Got its Name in 1924
Even the best of the cardiologists in the world acknowledge that vitamin E reduces heart attacks and prevents heart disease. In fact, it is a miraculous compound. It helps in many ways like Aging, Alzheimer’s disease, AIDS, Cancer, Cataracts, Male Fertility, Diabetes, Asthma & Allergies, Pollution, Skin, Wounds, and Menopause. One of the drawbacks is its deficiency detection in the body. In fact, its deficiency silently starts causing damage without body signaling some indications. By the time you notice it, the damage is done which is irreversible. The worst is damage to nerve tissues. Basically, appropriate absorption of Vitamin E even during its intake is a major cause of concern. If your body is prone to its poor absorption, it goes waste in most of the cases. It happens mostly in cases where the person is suffering from Cystic fibrosis, Cholestasis, Abetalipoprotein, Crohn’s Disease, or Inflammatory bowel disease.
Science and technology never gives up for the sake of human health. Now, there are some unique form of vitamin E available that is water soluble and thus is easy to absorb in body. This happens even in case of people suffering from AIDS. As we all know Vitamin E is a very important antioxidant in our body. But actually, its functions are beyond this. It slows down the degeneration process of cells and thus prolonging their survival. As a matter of fact, it breaks the chain reaction of oxidation in our body thus protecting all our cell membranes. This includes protection of cell membranes around our DNA. Vitamin E helps in case of Cancer by slowing down the overgrowth of cells. It also helps in keeping the bad cholesterol LDL under control thus lowering its bad impact in the body. It slows down the artery-clogging process thus preventing heart attacks.
8 Different Compounds Constitute Vitamin E Family
In fact, many of us are not aware that faster oxidation of LDL, the bad cholesterol accelerates artery clogging. Palm oil and rice bran oils are rich in vitamin E. These oils containing tocorienols could be one of the reasons of lower heart disease rates in Asian countries. AS a matter of fact, Vitamin E helps Cancer patients in three ways. Firstly, it boost the immune system, especially as the patients grow older. Secondly, it slows down the product of enzymes in body that help in growth of cancer cells. Thirdly, it slows down the generation of prostaglandin E2 and other inflammation causing compounds. It is of great help to diabetic patients by preventing blood clots and other important ways.
It is important not to reach a stage of consuming powerful drugs and facing their negative side effects. Rather it is better to consume preventive nutrients to avoid that stage in life. And one of the most important preventive nutrients in that regard is Vitamin E. Most of us don’t get enough of it in our diet. Hence is it not bad to take it as a substitute. But how much and in which form is very important to understand. I always try to avoid medicines and substitutes as far as possible. In order to achieve that our diet should be rich enough in providing us all necessary diet constituents. Vitamin E helps in repairing damaged skin, thickening of hair, balancing hormones, and improving vision.
Some of the food items that supply good quantity of Vitamin E to our body are Almonds, Avocado, Sweet Potato, Spinach, Wheat Germ, Sunflower Seeds, Olive Oil, Rice Bran Oil, Palm Oil, Butternut Squash, Trout, and so on.