RSSMost people are vitamin E deficient

Posted on Mon, 26 Sep 16

Most people are vitamin E deficient

Over two billion people suffer from micronutrient deficiencies, but one that has been grossly overlooked is vitamin E, with a new study finding that 82% of people are deficient.

It has been estimated that over two billion people suffer from micronutrient deficiencies, in particular vitamin A, iodine, iron, and zinc [1]. However, a nutrient that has been overlooked is vitamin E.  

A new global assessment of vitamin E dietary intakes found that 82 % of the people were below the recommended daily intake of vitamin E, with 91% in North and South America, 79 %in the Asia-Pacific region, and 80 % in Europe making up the global average [2]. 

Using an optimal blood level of above 30 μmol/L as a bench mark they also found that only 21% reached this threshold globally. A blood level of above 30 μmol/L has been associated with prevention of cardiovascular disease and different types of cancer, point out the study authors. 

Previously Maret G. Traber from the Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University has noted that because the adverse effects of inadequate vitamin E intakes are hard to define the significance has been overlooked [3]. However, vitamin E protects the body from oxidative stress and low dietary amounts of vitamin E could result in tissue damage over time. 

To get adequate vitamin E you can consume rich food sources such as sunflower seeds, almonds, and hazelnuts, with smaller but important amounts in olive oil, tomato, avocado, spinach, asparagus, and broccoli. A multivitamin providing 100% of the recommended daily amount (12-15mg) can also help ensure you are getting enough each day. 


1. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO); World Health Organization (WHO).Second International Conference on Nutrition: Conference Outcome Document: Rome Declaration on Nutrition; FAO: Rome, Italy; WHO: Geneva, Switzerland, 2014

2. Szabolcs P, Angelika F, Roos FF, et al.  A Systematic Review of Global Alpha-Tocopherol Status as Assessed by Nutritional  Intake Levels and Blood Serum Concentrations. Int J Vitamn Nutr Res. 2016 Jul 14:1-21. [Epub ahead of print]

3. Traber MG. Vitamin E inadequacy in humans: causes and consequences. Adv Nutr.  2014 Sep;5(5):503-14.

Tags: Vitamin E, Nuts, Seeds, Almonds, Olive Oil

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