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Metabolic Syndrome May Hinder the Absorption of Vitamin E

A recent study suggests that people with metabolic syndrome may not absorb dietary vitamin E as effectively as people without metabolic syndrome. It also found that cow’s milk — both with and without fat — helped people better absorb the natural vitamin E found in foods.


Metabolic syndrome is an increasingly common ailment in the United States characterized by a group of risk factors that contribute to coronary artery disease, stroke, and type-2 diabetes. The risk factors include obesity, high blood pressure, insulin resistance, large waist circumference, high triglyceride levels and high cholesterol.


Participants in the study included 10 people with metabolic syndrome and 10 people without. They were given either nonfat, reduced-fat, or whole milk along with a vitamin E supplement containing a-tocopherol. The researchers collected blood at regular intervals for 72 hours after ingestion.


The researchers found that participants who drank milk when they took the vitamin E supplement absorbed between 26.1 and 29.5% of the vitamin. The participants with metabolic syndrome absorbed less of the vitamin E than the healthy participants in the study.


The researchers suggest that obese people could increase their ability to absorb vitamin E by losing weight. However, fat-containing foods are one of the main ways that the body gets vitamin E. Therefore, they recommended that people with metabolic syndrome be instructed on how to cut calories without cutting consumption of higher fat, higher vitamin E foods.


Researchers from Ohio State University conducted the study. It was published on October 7, 2015, in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.


Vitamin E has eight different forms: four tocopherols (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) and four tocotrienols (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) and has been shown to help many aspects of the body.


Previous studies have shown that vitamin E intake is associated with lower cholesterol, healthier skin, maintaining a proper hormonal balance, and help reduce the risk of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).


If you’re looking to add more vitamin E to your diet, try eating more sunflower seeds, breakfast cereal, tomatoes, dried herbs, and dried apricots.

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