Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Vitamin E
Office of Dietary Supplements • NIH Clinical Center • National Institutes of Health
Vitamin E: What is it?
Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that exists in eight different forms. Each form has its own biological activity, which is the measure of potency or functional use in the body . Alpha-tocopherol (á-tocopherol) is the name of the most active form of vitamin E in humans. It is also a powerful biological antioxidant [2-3]. Vitamin E in supplements is usually sold as alpha-tocopheryl acetate, a form that protects its ability to function as an antioxidant. The synthetic form is labeled “D, L” while the natural form is labeled “D”. The synthetic form is only half as active as the natural form .
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