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Z Ernahrungswiss. 1991 Sep;30(3):174-80.

On the problematic nature of vitamin E requirements: net vitamin E.

Author information

1
Physiologisch-chemisches Institut, Universität Mainz.

Abstract

The requirement for vitamin E is closely related to the dietary intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA). By the protective mechanism to prevent PUFA from being peroxidized, vitamin E is metabolically consumed. In addition, PUFA impair the intestinal absorption of vitamin E. Therefore PUFA generate an additional vitamin E requirement on the order of 0.6, 0.9, 1.2, 1.5, and 1.8 mg vitamin E (RRR-alpha-tocopherol-equivalents), respectively, for 1 g of dienoic, trienoic, tetraenoic, pentaenoic, and hexaenoic acid. For this reason, the gross vitamin E content of food containing PUFA does not allow an evaluation of this food as a source of vitamin E. A suitable measure is the net vitamin E content, i.e., gross vitamin E minus the amount needed for PUFA protection. Therefore, some food-stuffs generally considered as vitamin-E sources, as concluded from their gross vitamin E content, cause in reality a vitamin E deficiency if not sufficiently compensated by other vitamin E supplying food constituents. Examples of the net vitamin E content of some fats and oils, fish and nuts are shown. Consequences for food composition data and food labeling and the problem of meeting the vitamin-E requirements are discussed.

PMID:
1763554
DOI:
10.1007/bf01610340
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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