Vitamin E > for food, dietary supplements and beverages

Physiological importance

Vitamin E was originally discovered as an essential micronutrient involved in reproduction and is now widely recognized as a major lipophilic antioxidant in virtually all cells of the human body. In combination with vitamin C and antioxidant enzymes such as glutathione peroxidase, vitamin E forms an integral part of the so-called antioxidant network. Antioxidants have the ability to counteract many types of oxidative stress resulting from exercise, exposure to the environment (ultraviolet light, cigarette smoke, pollutants, and chemicals), as well as metabolic processes like ageing. In addition, vitamin E has non-antioxidant effects in cell signalling and gene expression. It is positively influencing human health and disease prevention in general.
Vitamin E plays an important role as an antioxidant for the protection of lipids and vitamin A.

Deficiency symptoms

Overt clinical deficiency is very rare. The primary clinical deficiency symptom is peripheral neuropathy caused by the degeneration of sensory nerves.

Brands

Covitol®, Vitamin E

Properties

Vitamin E is available in powder as well as in oily forms as nature identical or natural grades (various grades).
Tocopherols are in general light-yellow oils at room temperature. They are insoluble in water and readily soluble in organic solvents.
Stability: While free tocopherols oxidize quickly, turning dark, their esters are more stable when exposed to atmospheric oxygen. Tocopherols are relatively insensitive to acids and alkalis and remain unaffected by temperatures up to approximately 200 ┬░C.

Applications

In the food industry Vitamin E is used both as an antioxidant in oxidation-sensitive fats, oils and fatty products and for the fortification of food products, such as children`s food, dietetic products, milk powder, breakfast cereals, etc.
In cosmetic products, Vitamin E is used to moisturize the upper scaly layer of the skin. Due to its anti-inflammatory action when applied externally and its ability to bind free radicals and therefore to counter photoaging of the skin, it is frequently added to sun care products.
In dietary supplements Vitamin E is used as an antioxidant in preparations containing fat (ointments, creams and oils). Some grades are more suitable for the direct compression of chewable tablets, sugar- and film-coated tablets, as well as hard gelatine capsules. Other grades are designed for the application in beverages, e.g. for the enrichment of soft drinks.