Vitamin E is mutual name for group of eight related tocopherols (tocopherol – organic compound made of various methylated phenols) which are fat-solvable. In our organism tocopherols act as an antioxidant, and antioxidants reduce free radicals. I’ll try to explain term “free radicals” as simple as possible – radicals are parcels (ions, molecules,…) in our body which have one or more impaired electrons (what is the real meaning of that – don’t ask me J) they don’t last long and they are very unstable. They are easily attached with all structures around them which mean they can cause damage of cell membranes and various DNA mutations. In long term, those damages cause many diseases among which are cancer, arthrosclerosis and similar illness. Free radicals occur in many different ways - from every day cell activities to all kinds of outer sources like pollution, too much of UV rays, stress, physical labours…
This short (and I hope understandable) explanation gave us conclusion about the real relevance of vitamin E in our life and why is it so important for us to take it in huge amounts. Till now it isn’t stated any harmful act of too much of vitamin E (although I have found an article saying that too much of vitamin E for too long can cause sight problems) and recommended daily amount varies – from 8 mg do 15 mg (it depends of the information source).
Anyhow – the best solution is to increase consummation of food rich with vitamin E like vegetable oil (sunflower oil has 55.8mg/100 g or olive oil 12mg/100 g – source Wikipedia ), wheat germs, green leafy vegetables (spinach, various types of lettuce…), all kinds of nuts, fish and eggs.
Diversity in our every day diet enhanced with food rich with vitamin E can only benefit our health because in time our immune system gets stronger causing us feeling better and healthier. Let me give you my personal example – I haven’t been paying any attention to the amount of vitamin E I take, but for almost nine years I haven’t been eating red meat and I based my cooking on fish, olive oil and green leaf vegetables and now I finally found reasonable explanation why I feel better today, with 32 years, then 10 or 15 years ago, when I felt like I was an old woman.