Eating vitamin E foods is a natural part of many healthy diets, but for those who require extra supplementation, it is important to know what the best sources are for this essential nutrient.
What is Vitamin E?
Vitamin E is a broad term for a group of compounds, including both tocopherols and tocotrienols, and is an important part of every healthy diet. Despite there being multiple forms of vitamin E, the most common that we find in our diet is y-tocopherol, followed by alpha-tocopherol. The most important detail of these vitamins is their role as water-soluble antioxidants, which give this nutrient such an important place in human health.
Not only does vitamin E help with protecting the skin and reducing oxidative stress in the body, but it also is necessary to form red blood cells and control the function of the immune system. This vitamin also plays an important role in cellular communication and may be able to lessen the risk of heart disease, cancer, and certain neurodegenerative diseases. The daily requirement for this vitamin is approximately 15-20 milligrams of the alpha-tocopherol variety.
List of Vitamin E Foods
The best vitamin E foods include spinach, almonds, palm oil, sweet potato, butternut squash, peanuts, broccoli, asparagus, olive oil, and shrimp, among many others.
Despite being very low in fat, a single medium-sized sweet potato provides more than 25% of the daily requirement for vitamin E. It is also high in dietary fiber, iron, potassium, and beta-carotene, an important antioxidant.
A 1/4 cup of sunflower seeds provides more than 80% of the vitamin E that you need every day, along with a good amount of healthy fats, dietary fiber, copper, manganese, selenium, and phosphorous, among others.
A single cup of butternut squash will provide more than 10% of your total tocopherol intake for the day, in addition to high amounts of vitamin A, lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene, making this an excellent food for preventing oxidative stress and chronic inflammation.
If you add a tablespoon of olive oil to your meals, you will be gaining more than 10% of the daily requirement for vitamin E, along with various omega-3 fatty acids, providing both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory protection.
Eating high-fat foods typically provides a good amount of vitamin E, and peanuts are no exception. A 1/4 cup of peanuts, less than a handful, offers 20% of the tocopherol intake you need each day, along with high levels of copper, B vitamins, and molybdenum.
Eating 1 cup of broccoli means gaining 15% of your daily intake for vitamin E, along with a huge range of other minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants, as well as dietary fiber, making broccoli one of the best vitamin E foods you can eat.
Similar to broccoli, a cup of this vegetable will offer about 18% of your vitamin E for the day, but also boasts other antioxidants that further aid skin health and the immune system, such as selenium and zinc.
Packed with healthy fats and protein, 1/2 of an avocado also provides just over 5% of your daily requirement for vitamin E.