Vitamin E are powerful antioxidants that protect cells from free radicals and nourish the skin. Vitamin E refers to a whole family of powerful antioxidants, including tocopherols and tocotrienols. 16 members belong to the vitamin E family, which act as antioxidants to varying degrees and thus protect the body from free radicals. They are fat-soluble vitamins that the body absorbs with dietary fat.
The protective function of vitamin E relates in particular to fat metabolism. But since it also cares for the skin, it is not only important for healthy eating, it is also used in some skin creams and sunscreens by cosmetics manufacturers. Read on to discover some of the best sources of vitamin E that you can get naturally, without any supplements.
Vitamin E is mainly made by plants, which is why they contain the most vitamin E. Vegetable oils are in first place here, olive and rapeseed oil are best suited to cover the need. They contain 45 to 80 milligrams of vitamin E in 100 grams. The front-runner among the oils is however the wheat germ oil, somewhat less than a tablespoon of the valuable oil is sufficient, in order to cover the daily requirement.
A little flaxseed in curd cheese or muesli not only promotes digestion, but also significantly increases the vitamin E balance of a day. 16 milligrams are contained in 100 grams of flaxseed.
Fish is also one of the best sources of vitamin E. A 150-gram portion of herring, salmon, catfish or mackerel and trout each provide around 3 milligrams. Thus, fish not only contributes to a good supply of vitamin E, but also provides many omega-3 fatty acids.
Sweet potatoes provide around 4.5 milligrams of vitamin E per 100 grams. In addition, they provide the healthy beta-carotene.
A 40-gram portion of hazelnuts contains 10.5 grams of the valuable vitamin E and thus almost completely covers the entire daily requirement. They are also rich in calcium, zinc, magnesium, iron and phosphorus, as well as unsaturated fatty acids. Almonds, like hazelnuts, are some of the best sources of vitamin E.
Vegetables and fruits also provide plenty of vitamin E. They are, in fact, some of the best sources of vitamin E. Bell peppers contain about 3 milligrams per pod, similar to a mango. Black currants provide about 2 milligrams per 100 grams, as much as an avocado.
Positive influence on the absorption of vitamin E. Since only about one-third of vitamin E can be absorbed by the body from food, you should positively influence its absorption. Vitamin E is fat-soluble and is therefore best absorbed in combination with fats – preferably healthy fats.
You do not need to do this with nuts and vegetable oils, as these are already contained here. If there is also sufficient vitamin C in the body, this supports the absorption and effect of vitamin E, as the vitamin C regenerates vitamin E that has already been used up in the body.
What does the body need vitamin E for? Vitamin E refers to a group of fat-soluble vitamins with a similar chemical ring-like structure. The best known and most researched form is α-tocopherol.
Vitamin E is present in every cell of the body as one of the essential protective vitamins. It intercepts radicals that attack the fatty acids of the body’s cells. Thus, it makes an outstanding contribution concerning protecting blood vessels and against arteriosclerosis. This task is supported by vitamin C, β-carotene, and various enzymes. Vitamin E is also crucial for the function of the immune system.
In the humans, vitamin E is found in the liver, fatty tissue, adrenal glands, skeletal muscles, and the heart and, in men, in the testicles.
A deficiency leads to the fact that the vitamin can no longer exercise its protective function to the full extent. As a result, radicals are no longer fended off, which can lead to cell damage and, in the long term, damage the nervous system and skeletal muscles. However, vitamin E deficiency is very rare in America. It occurs almost exclusively in people who cannot absorb or utilize the vitamin. This mainly affects people with a rare genetic defect and those with parts of their intestines surgically removed.
Furthermore, vitamin E deficiency can also result from cystic fibrosis or severe liver diseases.
Plants can only produce vitamin E. It protects the plant’s polyunsaturated fatty acids from oxidation and is generally found in exceptionally high amounts in fat-rich plants. As a fat-soluble vitamin, it is found primarily in wheat germ oil, rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, corn oil, and soybean oil. But the vitamin is also absorbed through nuts, fruits, vegetables, and bread. In animal foods, the best sources of vitamin E are present only in minimal quantities.
Since vitamin E explicitly protects the unsaturated fatty acids in the body from oxidation (“going rancid”), the requirement is closely related to the amount of unsaturated fatty acids consumed.
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This antioxidant effect of tocopherol is used in the food industry in the form of additives (E 306, E 307, E 308, E 309) to stabilize edible fats, dressings, and desserts example. However, it is not known whether these additives also have a vitamin effect.
To achieve a plasma level of >30 µmol/l, which is considered optimal for disease prevention, the DGE recommends that women take 11-12 mg of vitamin E (or compounds equivalent to the active vitamin) daily with food. For men, 12 mg to 15 mg is indicated depending on age (the requirement decreases with increasing age). However, the 2008 National Consumption Survey found that nearly half adults do not reach the recommended intake. Therefore, it is recommended that attention be paid to the best sources of vitamin E intake in the diet.
It is imperative to include vegetable oils in the diet. For example, one tablespoon of canola oil (12 g) contains almost 3 mg of vitamin E or about 1/5 of the daily requirement. With a spoonful of wheat germ oil (12 g), you even take in 20 mg of vitamin E, which far exceeds the daily requirement.
However, you should use germ oil and sunflower oil only in small amounts because they contain a lot of vitamin E but less of the critical omega-3 fatty acids.
Consume 1-2 tablespoons of vegetable oils daily, heated as little as possible for braising at low temperatures, for example, or as a salad dressing. In general, nuts, hazelnuts, almonds, and peanuts contain more significant amounts of vitamin E and therefore are among the best sources of vitamin E.
Feel free to enjoy a handful of nuts, seeds, or kernels every day. Avocados are also rich in vitamin E but should be consumed relatively rarely because they come from far away and require a lot of water during cultivation.