To complete Okanagan Woman’s review of the benefits of our vital vitamins, we look at E and K today:
VITAMIN E is a fat-soluble nutrient found in many foods. In the body, it acts as an antioxidant, helping to protect cells from the damage caused by free radicals.
The body also needs vitamin E to boost its immune system so that it can fight off invading bacteria and viruses. It helps to widen blood vessels and keep blood from clotting within them. In addition, cells use vitamin E to interact with each other and to carry out many important functions.
WHAT FOODS PROVIDE VITAMIN E?
Vitamin E is found naturally in foods and is added to some fortified foods. You can get recommended amounts of vitamin E by eating a variety of foods including the following:
Vegetable oils like wheat germ, sunflower, and safflower oils are among the best sources of vitamin E.
Corn and soybean oils also provide some vitamin E.
Nuts (such as peanuts, hazelnuts, especially almonds) and seeds (like sunflower seeds) are also among the best sources of vitamin E.
Green vegetables, such as spinach and broccoli, provide some vitamin E.
Food companies add vitamin E to some breakfast cereals, fruit juices, spreads and other foods. To find out which ones have vitamin E, check the product labels.
VITAMIN K is an essential vitamin required for protein modification and blood clotting. Recent studies suggest that vitamin K may play a role in treating osteoporosis and Alzheimer’s, and that consuming increased levels of vitamin K can help protect against cancer and heart disease.
WHAT FOODS PROVIDE VITAMIN K?
Green leafy vegetables, such as kale, spinach, turnip greens, collards, Swiss chard, mustard greens, parsley, romaine, and green leaf lettuce.
Vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage.
Fish, liver, meat, eggs, and cereals (contain smaller amounts)
Unless you are taking medication to prevent blood clots, like Warfarin or Coumadin, there is no known risk of vitamin K toxicity, and no reason not to eat a lot of it.