The Many Health Benefits of MCT Oil

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Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) have become increasingly popular as people are learning more about the health benefits ofnutritional ketosis , which is achieved by replacing net carbohydrates (total carbs minus fiber) with high amounts of healthy fats and moderate amounts of high quality protein.

Some of the The Many Health Benefits of MCT oil health benefits of coconut oil relate to the MCTs in the oil. But  MCT oil is a more concentrated source, so it tends to be more appropriate for clinical uses, which include:

  • Appetite reduction and weight loss
  • Improved cognitive and neurological function with possible implications in neurodegerative diseases
  • Increased energy levels and improved athletic performance
  • Improved mitochondrial function and subsequent reduced risk for diseases such as atherosclerosis,diabetes , cancer, cardiovascular disease, autoimmune diseases and epilepsy
  • As part of a specialized dietary therapy for the treatment of epilepsy
  • Prevention of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)

    Short-, Medium- and Long-Chain Triglycerides

    The disastrous “low-fat diet” dogma of the last half century has led to a devastating drop in most people’s intake of healthy saturated fats, including MCTs, as most people have bought into the erroneous assumption that saturated fats are unhealthy and will raise their risk of heart disease.

    Besides coconuts, coconut oil and palm kernel oil, small amounts of MCT can be found in butter and other high-fat dairy products from grass-fed cows and goats.

    Be sure not to confuse the extremely unhealthy industrial versions of coconut and palm oils (which are historically used as hydrogenated oils in industrial baked goods) with organic, virgin and unrefined oils available as “health foods.”

    MCTs get their name from their chemical structure. Fats consist of chains of carbon molecules connected to hydrogen atoms. Short-chain fats have six carbons or less.

    Medium-chain fats contain between six and 12 carbons, while long-chained fats, such as the omega-3 fats docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), have 13 to 21 carbons.

    Four Types of MCTs

    MCTs can be divided into four groups based on their carbon length:

    • 6 carbons (C6), caproic acid
    • 8 carbons (C8), caprylic acid
    • 10 carbons (C10), capric acid
    • 12 carbons (C12), lauric acid

    As a general rule, the shorter the carbon chain, the more efficiently the MCT will be turned into ketones, which are an excellent source of energy for your body — far preferable to glucose, as ketones produce far less reactive oxygen species (ROS) when they are metabolized to produce ATP.

    I recently wrote about how a novel ketone ester drink may help boost performance in professional athletes, but while ketone supplements are still in development, your best bet at the moment is to use MCTs found in foods and supplements, which your body will then convert to ketones.

    Most commercial brands of MCT oil contain close to a 50/50 combination of C8 and C10 fats. My personal preference, even though it is more expensive, is straight C8 (caprylic acid), as it converts to ketones far more rapidly than do C10 fats, and may be easier on your digestion.

    Coconut oil provides a mix of all the medium-chain fats, including C6, C8, C10 and C12 fats, the latter of which (lauric acid) makes up over 40 percent of the fat in coconut oil. (The exception is FRACTIONATED coconut oil, which contains primarily C8 and C10.)

    There are benefits to all of these fatty acids. However, caprylic and capric fatty acids increase ketone levels far more efficiently.

    Also, while lauric acid is technically an MCT, its longer carbon chain means it does not always have the same biological activity as the shorter chained ones. In fact, C12 can behave more like long-chain fatty acids (LCTs), which are less efficiently broken down into ketones.

    As a result, C12 is less potent when it comes to curbing hunger and promoting brain health. For these benefits, you want C8 and C10. Lauric acid is most well-known for its antibacterial, antimicrobial and antiviral properties.

    The shorter-chained MCTs, on the other hand, are more readily converted into ketones, which are an excellent mitochondrial fuel. Ketones also help suppress ghrelin (a.k.a. the hunger hormone) and enhance another hormone that signals your brain when you’re full.

    Why take MCT oil ?

    Your body processes MCTs differently from the long-chain fats in your diet. Normally, a fat taken into your body must be mixed with bile released from your gallbladder and acted on by pancreatic enzymes to break it down in your digestive system.

    MCTs don’t need bile or pancreatic enzymes. Once they reach your intestine, they diffuse through your intestinal membrane into your bloodstream and are transported directly to your liver, which naturally converts the oil into ketones.

    Your liver then releases the ketones back into your bloodstream, where they are transported throughout your body. They can even pass the blood-brain barrier to supply your brain with energy. MCTs also have a thermogenic effect, which has a positive effect on your metabolism.

    For these reasons, MCTs are readily used by your body for energy rather than being stored as fat. MCTs are also helpful for ridding your gut of harmful microorganisms like pathogenic bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. Like coconut oil, MCTs also have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

    MCT oil (either straight MCT or coconut oil) may be consumed every day. One of the challenges with MCT oils is that if you consume high amounts initially before you develop tolerance to them, they can cause loose stools and gastrointestinal (GI) side effects.

    I recommend taking no more than 1 teaspoon of MCT oil to start. Have it at the same time as another fat, for example, with a handful of nuts, with ghee in your coffee or as one of the oils in your salad dressing. Once your tolerance increases, you can slowly increase that amount to 4 tablespoons of MCT oil per day.

    If you stop taking MCT oil for a while and then restart, begin with a small amount again to allow your digestive system to readjust. That said, MCT oil is often more easily digested by those struggling to digest other types of fat, such as those with malabsorption, leaky gut, Crohn’s disease or gallbladder impairment (such as an infection or if you had your gallbladder removed).

    One of the ways you can improve your tolerance is by using the powdered form in shakes or home baked keto muffins or breads.

    How MCT Oil May Aid Weight Loss

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    Animal and human studies have demonstrated that MCTs enhance thermogenesis and fat oxidation, thereby suppressing the deposition and accumulation of body fat.9In other words, they have a heating effect, and your body can readily use ketones as fuel for energy in lieu of carbs.

    By helping your body burn fat and produce more ketones, MCTs provide you with effects that are very similar to those you would reap from a ketogenic diet , but without having to reduce your net carbs to as drastically low levels as you would on a ketogenic diet. Here’s a small sampling of studies looking at MCTs’ impact on weight:

    One three-month-long, double-blind and controlled study found that long-term consumption of MCTs helped otherwise healthy adults lose significantly more subcutaneous body fat than those who took LCTs. All subjects consumed 60 grams of total fat per day.

    The difference was the type of fat (MCT versus LCT). The energy, protein and carbohydrate levels were otherwise similar. According to the authors, “These results suggest that the MCT diet may reduce body weight and fat in individuals (BMI > or = 23 kg/m(2) more than the LCT diet.”

    A 2015 meta-analysis of 13 randomized controlled trials found that, compared to LCTs, MCTs more effectively decreased body weight, waist circumference, hip circumference, total body fat, total subcutaneous fat and visceral fat. There was no difference in blood lipid levels between the two fats.

    According to the authors: “Replacement of LCTs with MCTs in the diet could potentially induce modest reductions in body weight and composition without adversely affecting lipid profiles.”

    Other research suggests MCTs help with weight loss by reducing your appetite. As reported by Mental Health Daily: “Some scientists speculate that MCT acts on various hormones such as: cholecystokinin, gastric inhibitory peptide, pancreatic polypeptide, peptide YY and neurotensin. The precise mechanism of action of MCTs remains unknown, but it is known to induce satiety and reduced appetite compared to [LCTs].”

    MCTs Are Part of a Healthy Diet — They’re Not a Miracle CureImage result for mct oil

    That said, in most studies the effect on weight loss has been small — perhaps too small to make a significant impact on its own. As noted by Paleo Leap:

    “The authors … use kilojoules to measure energy instead of calories, but when you convert the units, you’ll see that few of the studies showed a benefit relevant to the real world. For example, one study found that 5 grams of MCT oil did indeed raise the metabolic rate of healthy men … by 11 calories a day … [Y]ou could burn more calories than that by walking for [five] minutes, or jumping rope slowly for [two] minutes.”

    It’s important to realize that MCT oil will not produce weight loss miracles all on its own. However, it is an excellent addition to an otherwise healthy diet. Moreover, many consider MCTs “the ultimate ketogenic fat,” as it allows you to eat slightly more net carbs while still staying in nutritional ketosis . Without MCTs, you’d have to cut carbs more drastically in order to maintain ketosis.

    If you’re serious about losing weight, review and implement the recommendations in my updated Nutritional plan . It will guide you step-by-step. MCT oil is a healthy fat that I recommend using in addition to other healthy fats , which include:

    Olives and olive oil  (make sure it’s third party-certified, as 80 percent of olive oils are adulterated with vegetable oils. Also avoid cooking with olive oil. Use it cold.) Coconuts and coconut oil  (excellent for cooking as it can withstand higher temperatures without oxidizing) Butter  made from raw grass-fed organic milk
    Raw nuts, such as macadamia  and pecans

     

    Seeds like black sesame, cumin, pumpkin and hemp seeds Avacados
    Grass-fed meats Lard and tallow (excellent for cooking) Ghee (clarified butter)
    Raw cacao butter Organic-pastured egg yolks Animal-based Omega 3  fat such as krill oil and small fatty fish like sardines and anchovies

    MCTs Promote Brain and Heart Health

    MCTs are a superior brain fuel, converting to ketones within minutes of ingestion. Therapeutic levels of MCTs have been studied at 20 grams per day. This is the amount indicated for protection against degenerative neurological diseases, or as a treatment for an already established case. As noted by Mental Health Daily:

    “In small scale human trials, MCT supplementation boosted cognition in individuals with cognitive impairment and mild forms of Alzheimer’s disease after just a single dose. While not everyone improved from the MCT treatment, those with certain genetics experienced notable improvement.”

    Ketones appear to be the preferred source of energy for the brain in people affected by diabetes, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and maybe even ALS, because in these diseases, certain neurons have become insulin resistant or have lost the ability to efficiently utilize glucose. As a result, neurons slowly die off.

    The introduction of ketones may rescue these neurons and they may still be able to survive and thrive. In multiple studies, ketones have been shown to be both neurotherapeutic and neuroprotective. They also appear to lower markers of systemic inflammation, such as IL-6 and others.

    Your heart health can also derive great benefit from MCTs. Human studies have shown MCTs help lower total lipid levels and improve cardiovascular health. For example, people who regularly consume coconut oil have a lower incidence of heart attack compared to those who do not consume coconut oil — an effect attributed to the MCT in the coconut.

    A 1991 study found that palm kernel oil was even more effective for lowering serum cholesterol than coconut oil, dairy and animal fats. Palm kernel oil also helped raise beneficial HDL cholesterol.

    In 2010, researchers published findings showing MCTs help lower your risk of developing metabolic syndrome, which includes a cluster of symptoms such as abdominal obesity, high blood pressure and insulin resistance. Unlike carbohydrates, ketones don’t stimulate a surge in insulin. Another benefit is that they don’t need insulin to help them cross cell membranes, including neuronal membranes. Instead, they use protein transporters, which allow them to enter cells that have become insulin resistant.

    How Much MCT Do You Need?

    While optimal dosing will vary from person to person, depending on your health status, energy needs and what your GI tract can tolerate, here are some general guidelines to consider:

    • Start with 1 teaspoon and work your way up, adding 1 teaspoon at a time over the course of a few weeks. If you experience GI distress or diarrhea, cut back. While it’s not harmful to overdose on MCT, your body will rid itself of the excess by causing diarrhea, so don’t overdo it.
    • Studies suggest an ideal ketone concentration for maximum hunger suppression and fat burning is 0.48 millimole per liter (mmol/L). Ketone measurements can be done through urine, breath or blood testing. Blood testing is the most expensive but also the most accurate and easy to test with home meters and strips. Measure your ketones about one hour after taking your MCT oil, and slowly build up your dose until you reach 0.48 mmol/L.
    • Alternatively, simply raise the dose (slowly) until you notice you’re no longer as hungry as you used to be.
    • For supplementation in neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s, studies have found beneficial effects using a daily dose of 20 grams (about 4 teaspoons) of MCT oil.

    As for the type of MCT oil to take, I prefer the more expensive C8 (caprylic acid) oil over those containing both C8 and C10. Avoid cheaper versions containing C6. Even a 1 to 2 percent concentration of C6 can contribute to GI distress. If you want C12 (lauric acid) for its anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory activity, add coconut oil to your diet, which is less expensive and more versatile than MCT oil.

    Remember, coconut oil is predominantly lauric acid, which has many benefits, including antimicrobial. However, it does not convert as efficiently into ketones and therefore does not contribute much of an energy boost. Nor does it suppress hunger or help feed your brain the way C8 and C10 do. MCT oil is typically tasteless and odorless, so it can easily be added to a wide variety of dishes and beverages, from salad dressing to smoothies and Vegetable juices .

    Image result for mct oil

    Ref : Article By Dr Mercola

    Pure MCT oil in India I Buy online at sharrets.com

Fighting skin ageing from the inside and out Both internal and external factors contribute to skin ageing, which shows up as wrinkles, dryness, pigmentation, and a loss of tone.

One of the biggest external factors that contribute to skin aging is ultraviolet radiation (UV). UV radiation comes in the form of UVA, UVB and UVC. The ozone blocks UVC, which is the most damaging of the UV rays, however UVA and UVB can also cause cellular damage by penetrating the skin layers and causing skin to age. UV radiation may cause damage by:

  • Penetrating and damaging the DNA of cells
  • Increasing the breakdown of collagen in the skin, and decreasing the rate at which the fibres are replaced.
  • Causing inflammation within the skin.
  • Causing free radical damage.

The best way to protect the skin from UVA and B is to Look out for a broad spectrum sunscreen that blocks both UVA and B light, but don’t just rely on sunscreen to do the job. It is best to wear both a hat and protective clothing.

Apart from UV rays, skin can become damaged when exposed to other factors including environmental pollution, cigarette smoke and other forms of sun radiation. Infra-red radiation can be felt in the form of heat and it is now believed to cause a similar level of collagen breakdown as UVA radiation.

Treating the skin from the inside out with antioxidants can also help to prevent premature skin aging. Antioxidants are important substances found in foods that help to protect cells against free radical damage. Free radicals can be generated from chemicals and toxins, and are also natural byproducts of respiration. Important antioxidants that have been shown to protect the skin are:

  • Green Tea – from the same plant as black tea, but contains antioxidants called catechins. The antioxidants in green tea act to scavenge free radicals from external (sun) and (internal) dietary sources, and may help to protect skin cells.
  • Lutein and zeaxanthin belong to the carotenoid family of compounds, and are found in broccoli, corn, spinach and kale. Lutien is a naturally occurring antioxidant found in high concentrations in the eyes and skin, and may play a role in protection of cells against UV damage.
  • Lycopene is an antioxidant derived from tomatoes and may have a role in protecting the skin from damage.

Eating a balanced whole foods diet containing fresh fruit and vegetables, wholegrains and omega-3 fats from nuts and seeds, fish and green leafy vegetables, is important as it provides oils for the skin and helps to minimise inflammation. Exercise and plenty of fluids are also key for the wellbeing of the body and also the skin.

Getting the right balance

When the UV index is below 3, a few minutes of sun before 10 am and after 3 pm in the hotter months will provide most people with adequate sun exposure to maintain vitamin D levels. In winter months in the southern states, 2-3 hours a week to face, arms and hands, is needed to maintain vitamin D levels.

Courtesy www.sharrets.com

Clear, clean skin from within Prone to blemishes and breakouts? Achieving a clearer complexion comes from the inside out –

 

Pimples, spots and breakouts were once thought to be a feature of our teenage years that we could put behind us once we reached adulthood. But many of us still get breakouts – and usually at the most inopportune moments when we want to look our best!

So what triggers a sudden bout of spots? For women, hormonal fluctuations during the menstrual cycle can be a key culprit.

Stress can also contribute to a breakout. When we’re stressed, our bodies respond by producing stress hormones. These can cause an overproduction of sebum (oil) which is also a risk factor for breakouts of pimples and acne.

Our diets can also be to blame for a bout of spots. Many of us think chocolate is the offending party, but it’s actually the consumption of a range of foods with a high glycemic index (GI) that may prompt a breakout. Eating a low GI diet can be beneficial to a clearer complexion.

Skin nutrients for clearer skin from within

Zinc is an essential nutrient that may help to play a role in achieving a clearer complexion. An adequate intake of zinc is needed to assist skin healing and lower levels of zinc on the body have been found in people with acne. Zinc also plays a role in healthy hormone balance.

Vitamin B6 may help if you’re getting breakouts in the lead up to your period as it helps to support healthy hormone balance. Having an adequate intake of vitamin B6 is also important for the maintenance of overall skin health.

Antioxidants help to support skin health and are beneficial to a clearer complexion. A contributing factor to a less than healthy complexion is oxidative stress – more commonly referred to as free-radical damage.

Antioxidants to consider include:

  • Vitamin C: helps with skin healing and supporting skin health
  • Natural Vitamin E : supports overall skin health
  • Copper: helps to support healthy skin
  • Selenium: helps to support skin health as a component of antioxidant enzymes produced in the body

Purifying skin herbs

Arctium lappa– burdock, is a herb traditionally used for its alterative action. Alterative herbs may help to support detoxification of the skin. Burdock is traditionally used to help promote clearer skin and may be of use to help support skin affected by acne.

Silybum marianum– milk thistle, is commonly used in traditional herbal medicine as it helps to support liver health and detoxification. Our liver is one of the main organs involved in detoxification.

Did you know?

Up to 30% of women aged between 20-40 experience breakouts?

For More Information – http://www.sharrets.com

VITAMIN E BENEFITS

Vitamin EThe vitamin that plays the role of antioxidant, preventing free radical damage to specific fats in the body that are critical for your health and naturally slowing aging?

Believe it or not, vitamin E benefits don’t end there. Other vitamin E benefits include its role as an important fat-soluble vitamin that’s required for the proper function of many organs, enzymatic activities and neurological processes.

Benefits of consuming more Vitamin E rich foods can include treating and preventing diseases of the heart and blood vessels, such as chest pains, high blood pressure, and blocked or hardened arteries. Vitamin E is found only in plant foods, including certain oils, nuts, grains, fruits and wheat germ. It’s also available as a supplement.

So let’s find out how you can get all these great vitamin E benefits, along with the best vitamin E foods, supplements and the signs of a vitamin E deficiency.

Top 11 Vitamin E Benefits

What are the top vitamin E benefits? Supplementing and consuming vitamin E-rich foods has been found to be associated with some of the following health benefits:  

  1. Balances Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a naturally occurring substance made by the liver and required by the body for the proper function of your cells, nerves and hormones. When cholesterol levels are in their natural state, they’re balanced, normal and healthy. When cholesterol oxidizes, it becomes dangerous. Studies have shown that certain isomers of vitamin E serve as a protective antioxidant that fights cholesterol oxidation. (1) This is because they can fight free radical damage in the body, which leads to cholesterol oxidation.

Tocotrienol isomers of vitamin E have three double bonds that positively impact cardiovascular health due to their ability to reduce activity of an enzyme that controls cholesterol production/synthesis (called HMG-CoA reductase). Tocotrienol isomers can also prevent cell adhesion and therefore slow down progression of arthrosclerosis, or hardening/thickening of the arteries. It’s important to note synthetic vitamin E doesn’t seem to have the same benefits of natural forms. Too much alpha-tocopherol can actually interfere with the cholesterol-lowering action of delta and gamma-tocotrienols, which are the two most bioactive tocotrienols and the types linked to cardioprotective activities.

  1. Fights Free Radicals and Prevents Disease Development

Free radicals fight and break down the healthy cells in your body, and this can lead to heart disease and cancer. These molecules form naturally in your body, and they can cause severe damage when they accelerate or oxidize. Certain isomers of vitamin E have powerful antioxidant abilities that have the power to reduce free radical damage, fight inflammation, and therefore help naturally slow aging  in your cells and fight off health issues like heart disease.

Studies have shown that these can significantly increase immunity, therefore helping prevent both common illnesses and serious conditions from forming.  Recent research suggests that for immune enhancement and antioxidant effects, the isomers alpha-tocotrienol, gamma-tocotrienol and to a lesser degree delta-tocotrienol seem to be the most effective.

  1. Repairs Damaged Skin

Vitamin E benefits skin by strengthening the capillary walls and improving moisture and elasticity, acting as a natural anti aging nutrient within your body. Studies have shown that vitamin E reduces inflammation both within your body and on your skin, helping maintain healthy, youthful skin.  These antioxidant properties are also helpful when you’re exposed to cigarette smoke or ultraviolet rays from sunlight, protecting against skin cancer.

Taking vitamin E with vitamin C fights skin inflammation after exposure to UV radiation and can also be useful in decreasing signs of acne and eczema. Vitamin E also helps the healing process in the skin. It’s absorbed by the epidermis layer of the skin and can be used to trat sunburn, which is one of the leading causes of skin cancer, among other factors. Because it speeds up cell regeneration, it can be used to treat scars, acne and wrinkles; this makes your skin look healthier and younger.

  1. Thickens hair

Because vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant, it helps decrease environmental damage to your hair. It can also promote circulation to the scalp. Vitamin E oil can retain the natural moisture in your skin, which helps your scalp from becoming dry and flakey. This oil also makes your hair look healthier and fresher. You can apply a few drops of vitamin E oil on your hair, especially if it looks dry and dull.

  1. Balances Hormones

Vitamin E can play a crucial role in balancing your endocrine and nervous systems, naturally working to balance hormones naturally.  Symptoms of a hormonal imbalance may include PMS, weight gain, allergies, urinary tract infections, changes in the skin, anxiety and fatigue. By keeping your hormones in balance, you will find it easier to maintain a healthy weight, keep a regular menstrual cycle and find yourself feeling more energetic.

  1. Helps PMS Symptoms

Taking a vitamin E supplement two to three days before and two to three days after a menstrual period can reduce the cramping, anxiety and cravings and other PMS sysptoms. Vitamin E can decrease pain severity and duration, and it can reduce menstrual blood loss. It does this by balancing your hormones naturally, and it helps keep your menstrual cycle regulated. 

  1. Improves Vision

Vitamin E may help decrease the risk of age-related macular degeneration, which is a common cause of blindness. Keep in mind, in order for vitamin E to be effective for vision, it must also be consumed with adequate intakes of Vitamin C, beta-carotene and Zinc. It’s also been found that taking high doses of vitamin E and vitamin A daily seems to improve healing and vision in people undergoing laser eye surgery.

  1. Helps People with Alzheimer’s Disease

Research shows that the anti-inflammatory activity of tocotrienols contribute to their protection against Alzheimer’s Disease . Vitamin E may slow down the worsening of memory loss and functional decline in people with moderately severe Alzheimer’s disease or other neurodegenerative disorders. It may also delay the loss of independence and the need for a caregiver or assistance. Vitamin E, taken with vitamin C, can also decrease the risk of developing several forms of dementia(6)

  1. May Lower Cancer Risk and Improve Effects of Medical Treatments

Vitamin E is sometimes used to lessen the harmful effects of medical treatments, such as radiation and dialysis for treating cancer.

This is because it’s a powerful antioxidant that fights off free radicals in the body. It’s also used to reduce unwanted side effects of drugs that may cause hair loss or lung damage.

Certain isomers of vitamin E have also been tied to cancer protection. Several animal studies have found evidence of suppression of tumor growth using oral doses of tocotrienols. While there’s more to learn about how exactly this works, several mechanisms of action are thought to be by tocotrienols, inducing cancer cell death, turning off genes tied to cancer and inhibiting angiogenesis, or the abnormal growth of blood vessels inside a tumor. In animal studies, cancer-protective abilities have been demonstrated in cases of  breast, prostate, hepatic and skin cancers.

  1. Improves Physical Endurance and Muscle Strength

Vitamin E can be used to improve your physical endurance. It can increase your energy and reduce the level of oxidative stress on your muscles after you exercise. Vitamin E can also improve your muscle strength. It eliminates fatigue by promoting blood circulation and can also strengthen your capillary walls and nourish your cells.

  1. Important During Pregnancy for Growth and Development 

Vitamin E is critical during pregnancy  and for proper development in infants and children because it protects critical fatty acids and helps control inflammation. Some experts believe that the biggest need for vitamin E is during the 1,000-day window that begins at conception, since vitamin E impacts early stages of neurologic and brain development that can only happen during this one specific period. Because of this, it’s recommended that pregnant women, nursing mothers and children up until the age of 2 take a natural, food-based supplement to make sure they’re getting enough to prevent abnormalities.

Vitamin E Foods

Most people aren’t aware that “vitamin E” is a collective description for eight compounds, four tocopherols and four tocotrienols.

Getting enough vitamin E seems to be especially critical for the very young (fetuses or infants), the elderly, and women who are or may become pregnant. According to the USDA, the recommended daily allowance for collective vitamin E is 15 milligrams per day (or 22.5 IU) for adults.

  1. Sunflower seeds : 1 cup — 33.41 milligrams (220 percent)
  2. Almonds : 1 cup — 32.98 milligrams (218 percent)
  3. Hazelnuts: 1 cup — 20.29 milligrams (133 percent)
  4. Wheat Germ: 1 cup plain, uncooked — 18 milligrams (120 percent)
  5. Mango: 1 whole raw — 3.02 milligrams (20 percent)
  6. Avocado: One whole raw — 2.68 milligrams (18 percent)
  7. Butternut Squash: 1 cup cooked and cubed squash — 2.64 milligrams (17 percent)
  8. Broccoli: 1 cup cooked — 2.4 milligrams (12 percent)
  9. Spinach: ½ cup cooked or about 2 cups uncooked — 1.9 milligrams (10 percent)
  10. Kiwi: 1 medium — 1.1 milligrams (6 percent)
  11. Tomato: 1 raw — 0.7 milligram (4 percent)

Different Forms of Vitamin E

There are eight major isomers of vitamin E. Most of the health benefits of vitamin E described above come from studies involving only form of vitamin E called alpha-tocopherol, which is only one of eight forms. Recently, researchers have focused more attention on other forms of vitamin E as well, with particular focus on tocotrienol, which some consider the “the 21st century vitamin E.” (9) Alpha- and beta-tocotrienols have been found to be the least active forms overall, while delta- and gamma-tocotrienols are the most active. Recent findings suggest that it’s not that alpha-tocopherol is harmful, but it may interfere with absorption of other forms of vitamin E, including other tocopherols and tocotrienols that are needed for heart and cognitive health.

According to the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University:

“Vitamin E is actually composed of two structurally similar compounds, tocopherols and tocotrienols. Each compound is comprised of four components, each of which has distinct molecular structures. Each component is referred to as an isomer (or vitamer) of vitamin E. Each isomer of vitamin E has unique properties, health benefits, characteristics, and attributes, with important applications when formulating food or beverage products.”

Given the benefits of different vitamin E isomers that have been discovered, today there’s a push to rethink the way that vitamin E is labeled and described in research studies. When only form of vitamin E is studied (usually only the isomer alpha-tocopherol), many believe that any benefits revealed from the study should not be attributed to “vitamin E” given that without the other isomers it’s not actually vitamin E in its full form that’s being studied. Steps are also being taken to educate the public about benefits specifically associated with tocotrienols isomers, which include protection against a wide range of common, chronic diseases due to having unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory potential.  Tocotrienols have also been found to have anticancer and anti-tumor abilities, lipid and cholesterol-lowering effects, and protective effects that impact the brain, neurons, cells and immune system.

So what does all of this mean regarding the types of vitamin E in your diet? It’s best to get a variety of vitamin E isomers from your diet, given that different types have different benefits. Tocotrienols have proved to contain some exceptional benefits that are not shared by other forms. Today, the brightest spot for tocotrienol research is in chronic conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, cancer and osteopenia/osteoporosis. Sources of tocotrienols are not as widely available or popular in most people’s diets however. These include annatto seed, coconut, barley, or commercially extracted palm oil and rice bran oil.

Finally, it’s also best to obtain vitamin E naturally from foods, rather than getting synthetic vitamin E from low-quality supplements or processed foods, which is usually in the form of either gamma-tocopherol or alpha-tocopherol. The vast majority of synthetic vitamin E found in supplements is not the type that’s actually found in nature and not necessarily helpful for preventing disease and boosting health. That’s why the best way to get vitamin E benefits is by consuming natural vitamin E foods. 

How to Get Enough of the Different Vitamin E Isomers (Including Tocotrienols):Most food sources in the typical person’s diet are high in vitamin E isomers like gamma-tocopherol and to a lesser degree alpha-tocopherol. This is especially true of oils derived from major crops like soybean, corn, cottonseed and sesame seed, which provide about 80 percent of the vitamin E isomers most people in the U.S. get from their diets. These oils contain between three to five times as much gamma-tocopherol compared alpha.

As mentioned above, it’s harder to get tocotrienols from your diet, as sources are far less common or available. The Linus Pauling Institute recommends aiming for small amounts of tocotrienol vitamin E near 140 milligrams/day, with an average effective dose for immune protection and other benefits considered to be between 200–400 milligrams/day. Here are tips on finding the best sources:

  • Although it’s very hard to find at this time, the seed of the annatto tree (Bixa orellana), which is a tropical plant, contains very high levels of tocotrienols, of which 90 percent are delta-tocotrienol and 10 percent gamma-tocotrienol.
  • Other good sources are rice oil, palm oil and rice bran oil, along with peanuts, pecans and walnuts.
  • Some others that are more common include oats, rye and barley cereal grains,

although these don’t have as much as other, rarer sources.

  • If you’re looking to increase the amount of all isomers vitamin E that you’re consuming in a day, there are lots of ways to get creative using these foods. Try adding nuts or seeds to your cereal, oatmeal or salad. You can also snack on raw nuts or make your own grain-free granola.
  • Add a boost of vitamin E to your lunch or dinner by having a spinach or kale salad; add in tomatoes or even fresh fruit like papaya.
  • If you’re looking to have a healthy, vitamin E-heavy snack, try a sliced apple with

peanut butter or smashed avocado on whole grain sprouted toast.

  • Another easy way to get some vitamin E benefits from your diet is to add just a

tablespoon of wheat germ oil to any recipe.

Recommended Daily Intake of Vitamin E

The recommended dietary allowance for vitamin E (including different isomers), according to the USDA, includes the amount you get from both the food that you eat and any supplements you take. The daily intake is measured in milligrams (mg) and international units (IU). Recommendations for different age groups are listed below:

Children:

  • 1–3 years: 6 mg/day (9 IU)
  • 4–8 years: 7 mg/day (10.4 IU)
  • 9–13 years: 11 mg/day (16.4 IU)

Females:

  • 14 years and up: 15 mg/day (22.4 IU)
  • Pregnant: 15 mg/day (22.4 IU)
  • Breast-feeding: 19 mg/day (28.5 IU)

Males:

  • 14 years and up: 15 mg/day (22.4 IU)

The tolerable upper intake levels are the highest amount of a vitamin that most people can take safely. These high doses can be used to treat a vitamin E deficiency, and it’s important to speak to a doctor before taking more than these upper intake levels.

  • 1–3 years: 200 mg/day (300 IU)
  • 4–8 years: 300 mg/day (450 IU)
  • 9–13 years: 600 mg/day (900 IU)
  • 14–18 years: 800 mg/day (1,200 IU)
  • 18 years and up: 1,000 mg/day (1,500 IU)

Keep in mind that because vitamin E is fat-soluble, supplements work best when they’re absorbed with food, and the American Heart Association recommends obtaining antioxidants, including vitamin E, by eating a healthy and well-balanced diet that’s high in fruits, veggies and whole grains. Getting your vitamins from the food you eat is always a better alternative than using a supplement because it’s difficult to over-consume vitamin E when getting it from your regular diet.

Vitamin E Deficiency Symptoms

Vitamin E deficiencies (meaning intake of all isomers) have long been thought to be rare, and when they do happen, it’s commonly believed that it’s almost never caused by a poor diet. However, some experts believe that many people today are actually not getting enough vitamin E from their diets in natural form, especially too little tocotrienols.

There are specific situations that may lead to a vitamin E deficiency due to malfunctions in terms of how nutrients are absorbed. A premature infant who is born weighing less than 3.5 pounds is in danger of a vitamin E deficiency, but a pediatrician who specializes in the care of newborns will typically evaluate the nutritional needs of an infant to help spot and treat this early. People with fat absorption problems, which is a common problem for those who struggle with inflammatory bowel disease, may also struggle with a vitamin E deficiency in some cases.

People who have an issue with their dietary fat levels are at an increased risk because as mentioned above, fat is needed for the absorption of vitamin E. This includes anyone who has been diagnosed withcystic fibrosis, has had gastric bypass surgery, or people with malabsorption problems, such as Crohn’s disease,liver disease or pancreatic insufficiency. Deficiency symptoms include loss of muscle coordination and impaired vision and speech.

Vitamin E Side Effects

Vitamin E benefits most healthy people when taken by mouth or applied directly to the skin. Most people do not experience any side effects when taking the recommended dose, but in high doses there are adverse reactions that have been recorded. Vitamin E may be unsafe when taken in very high amounts, especially for people who have conditions such as heart disease or diabetes. If you suffer from these health issues, do not take doses of 400 IU/day or more.

Some studies show that taking high doses of vitamin E, which is between 300–800 IU each day, might increase the chance of having a serious stroke called hemorrhagic stroke by 22 percent. One serious side effect of too much vitamin E is an increased risk of bleeding, especially in the brain.

Avoid taking supplements containing vitamin E or any other antioxidant vitamins immediately before and following angioplasty, a type of heart procedure. These vitamins seem to interfere with proper healing, so speak to your health care professional if you’re undergoing this kind of procedure and taking any supplements/vitamins.

Supplementing with very high levels of vitamin E could potentially lead to the following health concerns:

  • heart failure in people with diabetes
  • worsening bleeding disorders
  • increasing the chances that head, neck and prostate cancer will

     return

  • increasing bleeding during and after surgery
  • increasing chance of death after a heart attack or stroke

One study found that vitamin E supplements can also be harmful to women who are in the early stages of pregnancy. Women who took vitamin E supplements during their first eight weeks of pregnancy showed an increase of congenital heart defects.(15) High doses of vitamin E can also sometimes lead to nausea, diarrhea, stomach cramps, fatigue, weakness, headache, blurred vision, rash, bruising and bleeding. Topical vitamin E can irritate some people’s skin, so try a small amount first and make sure you don’t have a sensitivity.

Relationship with Other Nutrients and Interactions

Vitamin E supplements can slow down blood clotting, and when you use medications that also slow clotting, you may increase the chances of bruising and bleeding. Some medications that slow blood clotting include aspirin, clopidogrel, ibuprofen and warfarin. Warfarin (Coumadin), in particular, is used to slow blood clotting. Taking vitamin E with warfarin can increase your chances of bruising and bleeding, so be sure to have your blood checked regularly in order to regulate your dosing.

Medications that are used for lowering cholesterol may also interact with vitamin E. It’s not known if taking vitamin E alone decreases the effectiveness of some cholesterol-lowering medications, but it does seem to affect cholesterol when taken with beta carotene, vitamin C and selenium.

Final Thoughts on Vitamin E Benefits

  • Vitamin E benefits the body by playing the role of an antioxidant. As a

fat-soluble vitamin, vitamin E benefits include its role in proper function

of many organs, enzymatic activities and neurological processes.

  • Vitamin E is a collective description for eight compounds, four tocopherols and four tocotrienols, and they provide different vitamin E benefits. It’s best to get a variety of vitamin E isomers from your diet, given that different types have different benefits.
  • Vitamin E benefits include balancing cholesterol, fighting free radicals, preventing disease development, repairing damaged skin, thickening hair, balancing hormones, helping PMS symptoms, improving vision, helping people with Alzheimer’s, potentially lowering cancer risk and improving effects of medical treatments, and boosting physical endurance and muscle strength.
  • Vitamin E is found only in plant foods, including certain oils, nuts, grains,

fruits and wheat germ. It’s also available as a supplement. Some of the

top vitamin E foods you can eat to get these vitamin E benefits include

sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, wheat germ, mango, avocado,

butternut squash, broccoli, spinach, kiwi and tomato.

  • Vitamin E benefits the mother and child during pregnancy as well, as it’s a vital vitamin for growth and development.
  • Vitamin E deficiency symptoms include include loss of muscle

coordination and impaired vision and speech.

  • Vitamin E may be unsafe when taken in very high amounts, especially for people who have conditions such as heart disease or diabetes. If you suffer from these health issues, do not take doses of 400 IU/day or more.

To Supplement your daily Vitamin E requirements , you  may take Sharrets – Natural Mixed Tocopherols @ www.sharrets.com

 

Healthy Lifestyle Tips for the Busy Bee

 

Busy Office

It is not uncommon nowadays to see young adults working all day and having no time to exercise. The 10-6 working class is indeed in a serious dilemma. They simply cannot divide their time between work and exercise. The weekends in which they do have some time to go out and breath in fresh air, is almost consumed up by those long hour sleeps with the rest of the day being spend doing house chores. Such a sedentary lifestyle in the weekends along with the hectic schedule of the working days are sure to put one’s health under threat.

People today are becoming more concerned about their jobs and are completely overlooking the importance of a healthy meal and appropriate nutrition. Fast food intake has increased drastically due to the lack of time – the time required to prepare food at home. As such, despite eating so much of these types of food, people feel fatigued as if they had very low energy levels. This is perhaps the very reason of the prevalence of various health related diseases, most prominent of them being obesity.

Nevertheless, a proper timetable can help you prevent from falling into the trap of this vicious health circle.

  • Have a balanced lifestyle it is important to find the right balance in your life. Instead of sitting on the couch in front of the TV on weekends, spend your time out. Get some walk in the park, jog with your kids of friends, take up cycling perhaps.
  • Avoid fast food – although this may be quite difficult, it is not so if you schedule everything. Take some time before you go to sleep to prepare the next day’s meal. It does not have to be something sophisticated, but just a simple sandwich. It is much better than the high calorie burgers you eat at these fast food outlets.
  • Taking supplements – it is not a bad idea to take some supplements to add some necessary nutrients in your diet. Some of them may include:
  • Multivitamins such as buffered C or B complex

  • Antioxidant formula ( Sharrets Daily-SD) 

Healthy Lifestyles

Active Lifestyles

Avoid Fastfood

These tips and techniques can help you live a healthy and happy lifestyle.

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