Vitamin E is a family of alpha, beta, gamma, and delta tocopherols and corresponding four tocotrienols. (5). Alpha tocopherol is the most important of them. It is a fat soluble vitamin that acts as an antioxidant.
Functions: The roles and importance of all of the various forms of vitamin E are presently unclear. (5) Vitamin E stops the production of reactive oxygen species formed when fat undergoes oxidation.
Food Sources: Mustard greens, chard, sunflower seeds, and turnip greens are good sources of vitamin E. Very good sources include almonds and spinach (6).
Recommended daily allowance: 0-8 years = 4-8mg/d, 9-18 years = 11-15mg/d
Deficiency: The main symptoms of vitamin E deficiency are hemolytic anemia and neurologic deficits including spinocerebellar ataxia with loss of deep tendon reflexes, truncal and limb ataxia, loss of vibration and position senses, ophthalmoplegia, muscle weakness, ptosis, and dysarthria. (7). Treatment consists of vitamin E supplements.
Overdosage: Usually high doses of Vitamin E do not cause any problems. However, sometimes it may interfere with Vitamin K and lead to bleeding. Thus it should not be given in patients on warfarin therapy.