Vitamin E was discovered in the 1920’s and is actually the name of a family of eight fat-soluble compounds called the tocopherols, of which D-Alpha tocopherol has the most value to humans. Some substances in the body may be oxidized by certain kinds of oxygen molecules called ‘free radicals,’ which move through the blood system and cause various negative effects. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps prevent the oxidation of L-D-L cholesterol, Vitamin A, and Vitamin C by free radicals, thus helping prevent heart disease. L-D-L cholesterol is the so-called ‘bad’ cholesterol contained in meats and dairy products that clogs up arteries when it’s been oxidized. Vitamin E also may help prevent premature aging because free radicals also destroy connective tissues that keep the skin firm. In addition, the vitamin stabilizes cell membranes and protects the cells and tissues from damage. It’s naturally present in whole grains, seeds, lettuce, avocados, peaches, spinach, broccoli, asparagus, and dried prunes. Animal products are usually poor sources of vitamin E. Doctors differ in opinion as to whether natural vitamin E supplements are better than synthetic ones. For more information, contact a health care professional.