I’ve been taking vitamin E supplements for many years because I heard it helped prevent heart problems. Now the reports suggest it might not be good for me. Should I be eating food that naturally contains vitamin E instead? It’s all so confusing!
Small studies in lab animals suggested that vitamin E supplements helped prevent heart disease and cancer. Although these health claims were widely reported, they just didn’t hold up after more testing.
But don’t give up on vitamin E. The nutrient is a family of eight antioxidants that prevent cell damage. The research mentioned above focused solely on one of its forms (alpha tocopherol). Today, researchers are exploring natural and synthetic versions of E for eye diseases, diabetes, arthritis, and cancers. Until we know more, experts generally recommend getting E from foods such as spinach, almonds, oils, and fortified cereals. Supplements with “mixed tocopherols” most closely match the E in foods.