Want an antioxidant that is good for your skin? Vitamin E is a fat-soluble element found in a variety of foods.
In the body, Vitamin E works as an antioxidant and helps to protect cells from damage that can be caused by free radicals.
Compounds within the human body called free radicals convert food we consume into energy.
You can also be exposed to free radicals in the air around you, such as from cigarette smoke, pollution, and ultraviolet light.
Vitamin E is also important for the immune system and can provide a significant boost to fight off viruses and invading bacteria.
According to National Institutes of Health, as Vitamin E enters the bloodstream, and helps widen blood vessels, keeping the blood from clotting.
What is Vitamin E?
What is Vitamin E Good For?
Vitamin E is used for a variety of skin creams, ointments, and supplements.
However, it is also used by our cells to interact and carry out many important functions.
Vitamin E is mainly used for its antioxidant properties to boost immune systems.
It is also key for healthy skin and eyes.
According to WebMD, while Vitamin E is not a one-for-all cure, some use it to prevent and treat disease although studies are inconclusive as to whether it is actually effective.
The amount of Vitamin E that you need each day depends on what age you are and BMI.
As Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says, there are a number of foods that provide a good source of Vitamin E, but you can also use supplements as a great source if you are lacking in Vitamin E.
Besides food and supplements, there are also Vitamin E oils, which can boost collagen production, as National Institutes of Health claims.
Vitamin E Benefits and Uses
While most people believe Vitamin E benefits are purely for skin treatments and protecting against free radicals, there are a variety of benefits and uses that you can gain from using Vitamin E.
Studies have shown that Vitamin E has the following health benefits:
Fights Free Radicals
According to NCBI, as an antioxidant, there are certain properties of Vitamin E that have powerful abilities to:
- Fight inflammation
- Reduce free radical damage
Repair Damaged Skin
When you have a scar, Vitamin E creams and oils can be used to bolster capillary walls, thus improving the levels of moisture in your body so that your skin can become more elastic.
This is how Vitamin E naturally works as an anti-aging element when ingested and forms natural healing properties in your body.
According to NCBI, studies have also shown that Vitamin E can decrease the amount of inflammation in the body and in your skin, which may contribute to maintaining a youthful appearance.
This is especially important if you are in the sun a lot or smoke daily.
Ever see Vitamin E ingredients in hair commercials? This is because Vitamin E is a strong antioxidant that helps decrease free radical and environmental damage to your hair.
It also helps promote circulation within your scalp, preventing it from becoming dry, scaley, or flakey, Dr.Axe reports.
Helps Balance Hormones
If you have issues with hormones or want help with weight gain due to a hormonal imbalance, Vitamin E can play an essential role in balancing endocrine and nervous systems.
According to NCBI, vitamin E balances hormones naturally. It can help with symptoms of obesity, PMS, changes in skin, and fatigue.
Alleviates PMS Symptoms
As Dr.Axe states, if you know when your cycle is starting, you can take Vitamin E supplement 2 to 3 days before and after your menstrual period to reduce the symptoms of:
- Mood swings
It must be used alongside other important supplements like vitamin C, beta-carotene, and zinc over a long period to be most effective.
Improves Physical Endurance and Muscular Strength
According to NCBI, if you have issues with physical endurance, taking Vitamin E can help you increase your energy levels and lowers the level of stress on your muscles after a workout.
Pregnancy and Healthy Baby Growth
Pregnant mothers often taken Vitamin E for proper development of the fetus.
It protects essential fatty acids and also helps with inflammation.
The biggest need for Vitamin E according to research is within the first nine months.
Vitamin E can impact the early stages of brain and neurological development.
Vitamin E Foods
Did you know that Vitamin E is actually a collective group of eight compounds, four tocotrienols, and four tocopherols?
Vitamin E foods are especially important for the very young. Babies, women who are pregnant, and the elderly should get more Vitamin E.
As United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service states, vitamin E can be found in a variety of foods, including:
- Wheat germ
- Butternet squash
- Sunflower seeds
- Olive oil
“Olive Oil contains three major Antioxidants: Vitamin E, Polyphenols, and Phytosterols. Antioxidants when topically applied, may help protect the skin from premature skin aging.” states Zondra Wilson, Founder and CEO of Blu Skin Care.
Vitamin E for Skin
Your doctor has probably mentioned that Vitamin E is great for your skin, and you can take Vitamin E in a variety of different forms to help your hair, skin, and nails.
Many creams today also have Vitamin E listed as one of the ingredients.
So how does it work and can this antioxidant vitamin help your skin?
For optimal use, you should apply Vitamin E creams and oils at night before bedtime.
It is also more effective when combined with the intake of vitamin C. Also, you can use it to replace skin-brightening creams and target areas with excessive dryness.
Vitamin E for Scars
You can use Vitamin E to help with the treatment and damage from scars.
When applied as a cream, oil, or ointment, you may see increased healing effects.
Vitamin E works to improve skin’s elasticity and repair damaged skin cells after a cut or abrasion.
Vitamin E for Acne
Acne sufferers have used Vitamin E for many years to treat pores, pimples, and scars.
Vitamin oil retains the moisture that skin produces naturally when dry skin creates issues for those prone to acne.
Replenishing these oils is essential to regrowing the skin and repairing damage from skin issues.
However, Vitamin E should not be used for people with oil skin.
As your skin is naturally prone to oiliness, adding Vitamin E creams or oils would only exacerbate any issues.
Using Vitamin E for scars is important when treating acne.
Before and after an outbreak, you can use a Vitamin E treatment such as a cream or ointment to help treat the affected area and minimize scarring after a pimple is healed.
Sources of Vitamin E
Where can you get Vitamin E?
There are some forms of Vitamin E.
As a vitamin, it is derived from plant sources.
It can be ingested, applied to the skin as cream, or you can take supplements.
There are eight forms of Vitamin E divided into two types.
This type subdivides into four strains: alpha-tocopherol, delta tocopherol, gamma tocopherol, and beta tocopherol.
These can be extracted from soy oil and occasionally from wheat germ.
These also come in the same four forms. These are derived from palm oil, rice brans, and can permeate cell membranes.
Vitamin E Supplements
There are also two forms of Vitamin E supplements.
One is a synthetic, man-made supplement, while the other is made from natural sources.
You can tell the difference by looking at the bottle.
A bottle with a label of DL alpha-tocopherol includes synthetic Vitamin E.
Synthetic Vitamin E
It’s chemically made using petroleum products.
Unlike the natural supplement, this one is not easily accepted by the body.
The synthetic form is potent and is three times more effective than natural forms of Vitamin E.
According to Juvenon, when consumed in optimal quantities, Vitamin E is very effective. This means that the recommended dose is 1,000 IU per day.
Vitamin E Deficiency
Vitamin E is important as it has multiple antioxidant properties that your body needs to help with cell growth and to repair the damage.
Vitamin E deficiency may cause muscle weakness.
Vitamin E Oil Uses
There are a variety of uses for Vitamin E as oil, whether it uses organic or synthetic ingredients.
Vitamin E oil uses that you may consider include the following:
Before bedtime, you can take a small amount of Vitamin E and dab it under your eyes.
You should remove any makeup or other creams before applying Vitamin E to increase its effectiveness.
Also, if you use a synthetic Vitamin E oil, you can create a dangerous reaction with makeup.
The regular application of this oil can give a person younger looking skin.
However, the effects of these natural products are slow and should be used over time.
In this form of Vitamin E oil, gamma-tocotrienol can reverse the damage done by UVB radiation.
Vitamin E Moisturizers
Vitamin E is a great moisturizer and usually contains coconut oil.
Combined, these two oils create a thin layer of moisturizing protection.
It is best to apply right before the shower and let it absorb before washing off, as this cream tends to be a bit greasy.
If you use a Vitamin E cream, you can see increased healing on scarring.
People use Vitamin E all the time to recover from injured skin tissues.
These include keloid scars, scars made by cuts, scrapes, wounds, surgeries, pigmentation scars, and acne scars.
Treat Dry Skin
You can use Vitamin E to reduce or get rid of dryness. You will need to use oil for several weeks to see a result.
Continued use should prevent dry skin.
Stretch Mark Cream
Most stretch mark creams are great for diminishing stretch marks.
As stretch marks come from tearing in the dermis, Vitamin A can penetrate the dermis and start healing the skin underneath.
After weeks of application, most see a reduced appearance of stretch marks, OilHealthBenefits claims.
Vitamin E Side Effects
If you are taking oral capsules, liquids, powders, or tablets of Vitamin E, you may experience some Vitamin E side effects depending on the dose and your body’s chemistry.
In some cases, patients who have ingested 400 units a day over a long period may experience the following symptoms:
- Blurred vision
- Stomach cramps
- Unusual tiredness or weakness
According to Drugs.com, metabolic side effects are also associated with oral doses that are greater than 300 units per day include increased:
- Serum creatinine kinase
- Increased urinary estrogens and androgens
There have also been complications reported for the endocrine system including a decrease in serum thyroxine and triiodothyronine.
Vitamin E Supplement
Vitamin E supplements can be used to prevent and treat deficiency in the body.
While a low level of Vitamin E is rare, most people who eat a normal diet will not need to take supplements.
According to National Institutes of Health, however, pregnant women, children, and elderly patients may use these vitamins to assist the body’s cells in growing healthy bodies, repairing from damage, and preventing vision issues.
Vitamin E Dosage
If taking Vitamin E supplements or ingesting naturally through your diet, the FDA has named a Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA).
These are determined by age.
You can determine your Vitamin E dosage by using the following:
0 to 6 Months
Both males and females should take 4 mg or 6 IU daily.
7 to 12 months
Both males and females should take 5 mg or 7.5 IU daily.
1 to 3 Years
Both males and females should take 6 mg or 9 IU daily.
4 to 8 Years
Both males and females should take 7 mg or 10.4 IU daily.
9 to 13 Years
Both males and females should take 11 mg or 16.4 IU daily.
Both males and females should take 15 mg or 22.4 IU.
Bottom Line on Vitamin E
Vitamin E is an essential antioxidant of the body. It can help prevent disease but also heal your skin.
While people use Vitamin E mostly for their skin and hair, it is beneficial for strengthening muscles, and enhancing cellular growth.
Summer Banks has researched over 5000 weight-loss programs, pills, shakes and diet plans. Previously, she managed 15 supplement brands, worked with professionals in the weight loss industry and completed coursework in nutrition at Stanford University.