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Vitamin E structure and function

Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that includes a group of eight compounds, four tocopherols and four tocotrienols. The most biologically active form of vitamin E is alpha-tocopherol, which is the most abundant form in the human body.

The primary function of vitamin E is as an antioxidant, protecting cells from damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are unstable molecules that can cause oxidative damage to cells, leading to aging and diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer's disease. Vitamin E can neutralize free radicals and prevent them from causing damage to the body's cells and tissues.

In addition to its role as an antioxidant, vitamin E has other functions in the body, including supporting the immune system, promoting healthy skin and eyes, and helping to regulate the activity of enzymes involved in various metabolic processes.

Vitamin E is found in a variety of foods, including nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, leafy green vegetables, and fortified cereals. It is also available in supplement form. However, excessive intake of vitamin E supplements can be harmful, and it is recommended that adults get their vitamin E from food sources rather than supplements, except under medical supervision.