According to Ohio State Medical Center researchers, supplementing your diet with a natural form of Vitamin E called alpha tocotrienol might protect your brain's sensitive nerve cells, perhaps limiting the damage caused by a stroke.
More from Sen:
Q. Is this a new drug?
A. No, it is not a drug but a natural product. Vitamin E is abundant in natural products in some Asian countries. It is taken routinely and not something to worry about.
Q. Explain something to me: Do all vitamins come in different forms? What are we talking about?
A. Natural vitamin E comes in eight different forms and four are called tocopherols, the most common types found in supplements. The other four forms are tocotrienols and the pure sources are extracted from Malaysian virgin crude palm oil.
While tocopherols are generally present in common vegetable oils such as soy bean and canola, tocotrienols are concentrated in cereal grains with the highest level found in palm oil.
Q. Are you suggesting we should find a source of vitamin E tocotrienol?
A. It is poorly studied and poorly known. Cereals, which are one source, are not able to deliver in the quantity we recommend. I suggest a palm oil supplement from a dietary supplement store.
Q. Let me quote your research: When the brain is attacked by a stroke, cardiovascular disease or trauma, dangerously toxic substances can build up around the nerve cells and these can cause these cells to degenerate or die. You are saying tocotrienol can limit damage?
A. This is not a drug, it is a nutrient. If you have a high enough concentration of alpha tocotrienol in your body, it could help prevent neuro-degeneration at the time of a stroke.
Q. Your press release says that tocotrienols, taken orally, cross the blood-brain barrier and that the only way to get tocotrienols into the brain's neurons is through supplementation over time. You say we are a tocotrienol-deficient nation. What is your recommendation?
A. To help protect your brain's neurons, consider supplementing your diet with 100 mg twice a day of vitamin E from Malaysian palm oil, which is rich in alpha tocotrienol.
It takes about 8 to 10 weeks of supplementation to build up an adequate reserve in your system.