As researchers continue to look for factors that may influence the development of osteoarthritis (OA), a recent review published in the Journal of Clinical Rheumatology examined the role of fat-soluble vitamins in managing this condition. The research team looked at the 4 fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K) and gathered all available information about their potential impact on OA’s pathology.
For thousands of years discovering the secrets to a long life has been a primary goal for most of humanity. But sometimes figuring out if something is a help or a hindrance to longer life is complicated. Such is the case with vitamin E.
Gamma-tocopherol is a major form of vitamin E, which is abundant in nuts like walnuts and pecans and in the legume peanut, as well as seed oils such as corn, soybean and sesame. This type has drawn little attention compared with alpha-tocopherol, the form most commonly found in vitamin E supplements.
Research has shown vitamin E’s health benefits to the brain, heart, bones; but, brands need to take notice of the form, as natural vitamin E imparts more health benefits.
In the 1970s, researchers attempted to discover the symptoms of a vitamin E deficiency by providing subjects (read: graduate students) with a diet completely devoid of vitamin E. After a year on this diet, the subjects showed no signs of deficiency. The researchers concluded that vitamin E was vitamin in search of a deficiency syndrome (such as C and scurvy or D and rickets). Later, researchers found that many nutrient deficiencies do not show up as a classical deficiency syndrome, but rather surface years later as heart disease, cancer, or some other catastrophic disease.
Today, annatto is known to be one of the superior sources of tocotrienols, whose researched health benefits mirror some of those passed down from ancient traditions. Unique among the plant kingdom, annatto produces only tocotrienols, whereas all other known sources of this vitamin E nutrient, such as palm and rice, deliver mixtures of tocopherols and tocotrienols, typically containing anywhere from 25-50% alpha-tocopherol. This is one ancient secret steeped into an Amazonian past.
Welcoming your first child is a time of great joy, but also a time of great anxiety. Worries about whether you’re feeding him right, carrying her correctly, bathing him properly and interpreting her heart-rending cries accurately, are common emotional companions for first-time parents. So, it’s hard enough coping with a healthy baby, but what if he or she also has a health problem?
Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) Department of Bioprocess Technology professor Dr Lai Oi Ming had her first, and only, child in 2013. But her joy in welcoming her firstborn was marred by his unexpected skin condition.
Asthma, a chronic inflammation of the lung airways, has been around since the ancient Egyptian times. This disease plagues approximately 26 millions Americans today, and the number increases every year. Historical records show hundreds of remedies and recipes to help with the symptoms asthma brings, but none have been successful enough to cure the illness. Fortunately, researchers from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine may be a step closer to discovering the cure: Patients who take vitamin E supplements (gamma tocopherol) were found to have less inflammation in their lung airways.
In the recent history of dietary supplements, vitamin E has been around forever. Discovered in 1922, it was once known only as tocopherol because the tocotrienol form had not yet been identified. The bulk of research was on tocopherols until recently, which may explain why alpha-tocopherol is the form used in most multivitamins and supplemented in foods today. Yet, a growing body of evidence suggests tocotrienols—which contain some exceptional benefits not shared by their “older” tocopherol siblings–deserve a closer look.
The in vivo function of vitamin E is to scavenge peroxyl radicals via its phenolic (chromanol) hydroxyl group, thus protecting lipids against free radical-catalyzed peroxidation. The tocopheryl radical formed can then be reduced by reductants such as L-ascorbate. Other major products of α-tocopherol oxidation include α-tocopherylquinone and epoxy-α-tocopherols. The metabolites α-tocopheronic acid and its lactone, known as the Simon metabolites, are generally believed to be artefacts. In addition to these oxidation products, the other major class of tocopherol metabolites is the carboxyethyl-hydroxychromans (this pathway). These metabolites are produced in significant amounts in response to excess vitamin E ingestion.