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  • Vitamin E

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    Vitamin E is a group of eight fat soluble compounds that include four tocopherols and four tocotrienols. Vitamin E deficiency, which is rare and usually due to an underlying problem with digesting dietary fat rather than from a diet low in vitamin E, can cause nerve problems. The crucial function played by Vitamin E that makes it a vitamin is poorly understood, but may involve antioxidant functions in cell membranes. Other theories hold that vitamin E – specifically the RRR stereoisomer of alpha-tocopherol – act by controlling gene expression and cell signal transduction. Worldwide, government organizations recommend adults consume in the range of 7 to 15 mg per day. As of 2016, consumption was below recommendations according to a worldwide summary of more than one hundred studies that reported a median dietary intake of 6.2 mg per day for alpha-tocopherol. Research with alpha-tocopherol as a dietary supplement, with daily amounts as high as 2000 mg per day, has had mixed results.

  • Tocopherol

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    Tocopherols (; TCP) are a class of organic chemical compounds (more precisely, various methylated phenols), many of which have vitamin E activity. Because the vitamin activity was first identified in 1936 from a dietary fertility factor in rats, it was given the name "tocopherol" from the Greek words "τόκος" tókos, birth, and "φέρειν", phérein, to bear or carry meaning in sum "to carry a pregnancy," with the ending "-ol" signifying its status as a chemical alcohol. α-Tocopherol is the main source found in supplements and in the European diet, where the main dietary sources are olive and sunflower oils, while γ-tocopherol is the most common form in the American diet due to a higher intake of soybean and corn oil. Tocotrienols, which are related compounds, also have vitamin E activity. All of these various derivatives with vitamin activity may correctly be referred to as "vitamin E". Tocopherols and tocotrienols are fat-soluble antioxidants but also seem to have many other functions in the body.

  • Tocopheryl acetate

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    Tocopheryl acetate, also known as vitamin E acetate, is a common vitamin supplement with the molecular formula C31H52O3 (for 'α' form). It is the ester of acetic acid and tocopherol (vitamin E). It is often used in dermatological products such as skin creams. Tocopheryl acetate is not oxidized and can penetrate through the skin to the living cells, where about 5% is converted to free tocopherol. Claims are made for beneficial antioxidant effects. Tocopheryl acetate is used as an alternative to tocopherol itself because the phenolic hydroxyl group is blocked, providing a less acidic product with a longer shelf life. It is believed that the acetate is slowly hydrolyzed after it is absorbed into the skin, regenerating tocopherol and providing protection against the sun's ultraviolet rays. Although there is widespread use of tocopheryl acetate as a topical medication, with claims for improved wound healing and reduced scar tissue, reviews have repeatedly concluded that there is insufficient evidence to support these claims.

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