How do you know which vitamins, and which brands, you should be taking? In a Health News Digest article, holistic pharmacist Sherry Torkos cleverly used the alphabet’s first five letters as a memory device to help solve this common vitamin-buying mystery. She also explained the benefits of vitamin E tocotrienols from sustainable Malaysian palm oil.
The A through E way to buy vitamins
Torkos associated each letter with solid advice.
A: Analyze why you want to take this vitamin. “Understand what to expect from taking this supplement,” suggested Torkos.
B: Beware of interactions and side effects. “Some vitamins, such as vitamin K, may not be recommended if you are also taking a blood thinning medication.”
C: Check for the letters cGMP on the label or packaging. “They indicate the product has passed current Good Manufacturing Practices quality testing. Other seals of approval may be: USP, CL or NSF.”
D: Dose. “Know the proper dosage. … Taking a supplement consistently also matters.”
E: Expiration dates. “All vitamins and supplements have expiration dates printed on the box, bottle or label. Always discard them after that date.”
Here’s what you may not know about vitamin E
Torkos explained some of the heart, skin and brain health benefits of vitamin E tocotrienols. “Long touted for its heart health and skin health benefits, research on some forms of vitamin E is yielding exciting results. Most people think of vitamin E as a single nutrient but there are actually eight different forms of vitamin E: four tocopherols and four tocotrienols. Tocopherols and tocotrienols have entirely different health benefits. Recent research has found that certain tocotrienols may possibly limit the neurological damage if you have a stroke. Tocotrienols are also good for the heart.”
To add vitamin E tocotrienols to your diet, she advised, “Look for tocotrienol supplements derived from Malaysian palm fruit oil, which is non-GMO.”
You can also get vitamin E tocotrienols by using sustainable Malaysian palm oil in your cooking. “Palm fruit oil has a neutral effect on cholesterol, and red palm fruit cooking oil can tolerate high-heat cooking better than olive oil.”