Vitamin E is a superstar among nutrients. Often referred to as “brain and bedroom nutrient,” it functions as an antioxidant. It helps in improving elasticity, moisture content and strengthens capillary walls of your skin, thereby keeping it young and healthy. It has natural anti- aging and regeneration properties and is used to heal burns injuries and skin cancer. It has also been found to be effective in reducing irritation caused by bee stings.
Vitamin E, a blanket term for a group of 8 related fat-soluble compounds, neutralizes the effects of harmful free radicals—the unstable compounds that cause cell damage. It plays a critical role in regenerative functions, helps maintain a healthy immune system by warding off bacteria and viruses, helps in cell interactions, acts as an enzyme for certain biochemical reactions, balances hormones, improves vision, prevents clotting by keeping your blood vessels wide, contributes towards interaction between cells…Phew! The list is long.
Despite its many benefits, vitamin E is one of the most underrated and undervalued vitamins. What you must note is that the human body is incapable of producing vitamin E on its own.
Vitamin E deficiency is caused mainly due to a low-fat diet, low weight at birth and fat malabsorption – an abnormality in the way the gastrointestinal tract absorbs nutrients. People with such a condition typically have difficulty in absorbing vitamin E, as well. Such cases, however, are rare.
Here are 12 signs that you may be vitamin E deficient:
1. You frequently experience weakness and fatigue
Experiencing fatigue and weakness for unexplained reasons is a result of having mild anemia which is caused when there is a low amount of red blood cells (RBCs) in the blood. RBCs contain hemoglobin which transports oxygen to other parts of the body. Vitamin E deficiency often leads to a lower count of RBCs as it plays an important role in the formation of RBCs.
2. You have recurring muscle cramps
Sudden involuntary contraction of muscles and the creepy- crawly pins and needles sensations you feel without any muscle strain or pressure is called Restless Leg Syndrome (RSL). Muscle cramps and other sensations, at any time of the day or night, may not be just due to dehydration or muscle strain. They could also be the result of missing vitamins in your diet. Deficiency of vitamin D and vitamin E are often cited as reasons for muscle cramps and RSL.
3. You have sight problems
Do you catch yourself squinting hard with a blurry vision or just can’t figure out what you are seeing? Well, vitamin E (or lack of it) may have something to do with it. Deficiency of vitamin E leads to retinal thinning or degeneration which causes damage to the inner lining of the eye which begins to thin. Vitamin E levels, when not maintained, may lead to impaired night vision and sometimes complete blindness. Vitamin E helps in delaying or preventing cataract.