Vitamin E, DHA & Almonds

Dear Jack

I’m interested in taking a DHA supplement and was reading your page on Omega-3s. I also read the linked pages at NuTru and Deva. According to NuTru:

Remember, the body needs vitamin E to process omega-3 DHA,…

Do you know if this is accurate? If so, do you recommend a particular amount of Vitamin E? (I seem to remember that E is one of the vitamins that could become toxic if taken in too large an amount…?)

Answer:

Vitamin E, an antioxidant, can protect DHA if packaged together, but I do not see any reason why vitamin E is needed to “process” DHA. I’ve never seen this mentioned in any scientific paper on DHA nor know of any mechanism that would indicate this to be true.

As for other benefits of vitamin E, click here for a thorough analysis of the literature by the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University (it does not mention DHA). They conclude:

Scientists at the Linus Pauling Institute feel there exists credible evidence that taking a supplement of 200 IU (134 mg) of natural source d-alpha-tocopherol (RRR-alpha-tocopherol) daily with a meal may help protect adults from chronic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, neurodegenerative diseases, and some types of cancer.

See the chart on that page for a list of good sources of vitamin E. Almonds turn out to be the best, providing 7.4 mg per ounce. The RDA is 15 mg for adults.

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