Vitamin E is a very potent fat-soluble antioxidant that protects your cells from damaging free radicals, it may protect against cancer，reduce the risk of heart disease. It’s a very affordable but very effective dietary supplement. I often bought vitamin E for my mother. But one time when I searched Vitamin E product in iHerb.com, I noticed two bottles of vitamin E with same brands and descriptions, even same prices!
Then I clicked in each to view carefully to find the difference was the ingredients. One is “Vitamin E (as d-Alpha Tocopherol)” and the other is “Vitamin E(as d-Alpha Tocopherol plus d-Beta, d-Delta and d-Gamma Tocopherols)”. It seems the difference between pure form and mix forms. So which one should I choose?
A mixture of tocopherols is better than pure alpha tocopherol for human
I searched and found there are 8 forms of vitamin E in all : tocopherol (alpha-, beta-, gamma-, delta-) and tocotrienol (alpha-, beta-, gamma-, and delta-). Long ago people only considered vitamin E in form of tocopherol-alpha was only the active form or the strongest form, but now scientific studies show that different forms have different benefits to human. For example, although alpha tocopherol is a better antioxidant than gamma tocopherol, but gamma tocopherol is a better anti-inflammatory. Nowadays scientific literature suggests that the consumption of a mixture of all four forms of tocopherols is of greater benefit than simply consuming alpha-tocopherol. A study posted in the May 2002 edition of the Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology shows that the mixture of tocopherols (gamma, delta and alpha) counteract the development of cardiovascular disease when compared to an intake of pure alpha tocopherol.
Tocotrienols are also beneficial
A research from Ohio State University says that tocotrienols appear to protect nerve cells, preventing them from dying after a stroke. Tocopherols are also helpful for the patients who got breast cancer. University of Texas, Austin researchers noted that delta-tocotrienol was the most potent inducer of cell death, causing apoptosis in breast cancer cells at a rate twice that of gamma-tocotrienol.
I saw in an arcticle that “tocopherols may inhibit the absorption of tocotrienols”, that means tocopherols should not mixed with tocotrienols, but when I searched “tocotrienol” in online shops like iHerb.com, all the tocotrienol product are more or less with a small quantity of tocopherols, I guess a bit of tocopherols is inevitable to occur when producing natural tocotrienols.
Natural vitamin E is better than synthetic vitamin E
The on-sale vitamin E can be Synthetic and Natural. Synthetic vitamin E is less bioavailable to your body and much less beneficial. And how to choose the bottle which is natural vitamin E? Let’s look at the labels, when it’s “d-Alpha Tocopherol”, that means it’s natural Alpha Tocopherol. The prefix of “d” or “D” indicates “natural”, and the prefix of “dl” or “DL” indiciates “synthetic”.
After searching and studying carefully lots of informations from internet, I chose “Vitamin E (as d-Alpha Tocopherol plus d-Beta, d-Delta and d-Gamma Tocopherols)” because it’s a mixture which is much more beneficial and also it’s natural to be more bioavailable.