Tocotrienols are members of the vitamin E family. Like vitamin E, tocotrienols are potent antioxidants against lipid peroxidation (the damaging of fats by oxidation).
Human studies indicate that, in addition to their antioxidant activity, tocotrienols have other important functions, especially in maintaining a healthy cardiovascular system. Test tube and animal studies indicate a possible role for tocotrienols in protecting against cancer (particularly breast and skin cancer).
Like vitamin E, tocotrienols may offer protection against hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) by preventing oxidative damage to LDL cholesterol (oxidation of LDL cholesterol is believed to be one of the triggering factors for atherosclerosis). In a double-blind study in patients with severe atherosclerosis of the carotid artery’the main artery supplying blood to the head’tocotrienol administration (200 mg per day) reduced the level of lipid peroxides in the blood. Moreover, in a small sample of patients receiving tocotrienols for 12 months, the size of atherosclerotic plaques became smaller. In contrast, none of the patients receiving the placebo showed an improvement in their atherosclerosis.
Test tube studies indicate that tocotrienols exert some anticancer effects, especially against skin and breast cancer. These results still need confirmation in human studies, however.
Why should anyone take tocotrienols? I am already taking Vitamin E.
Individuals interested in enhancing their antioxidant status should take tocotrienols. Most Vitamin E supplements contain only alpha-tocopherol whereas palm based tocotrienols contain tocotrienols, phytosterols (proven to prevent absorption of cholesterol), squalene (a powerful antioxidant) and carotenoids. A combination of all these phytonutrients in which recent research have suggested may be highly effective in the overall maintenance of health.
What can I expect from taking tocotrienols regularly?
The effect of antioxidants, and likewise tocotrienols, only become apparent in the long term. Supplementing daily with tocotrienols will result in the reduction in cholesterol level and reduce the risk of free-radical degenerative diseases.
How much is usually taken?
Our typical recommendation is 35 to 70 mg per day. Most studies have used 200 mg daily.
Dosages of palm tocotrienols in human studies were for a specific therapeutic condition – hypercholesterolemia, carotid stenosis and breast cancer at high dosages of tocotrienols. Individual who are interested in enhancing their antioxidant status as part of a long term nutritional plan should consider a moderate use levels. For these people who want to maintain a healthy level of cholesterol, a healthy heart and cardio vascular condition and breast health, the consensus among tocotrienol research scientists was a dosage of 30-50mg/day.
Commercial dietary supplements currently offer daily supplementation of tocotrienols from 20-60mg for healthy adults. Dr Asaf Qureshi (University of Wisconsin – the first research scientist to show that tocotrienols found in barley have the ability to lower total serum cholesterol), in his article titled ?The Mutitherapeutic Properties of Palm Oil and its Novel Vitamin E? quoted that daily intake of 34-42.5mg of pure tocotrienols obtained from palm oil will provide enough tocotrienols for all the health benefits associated with them.
Why is tocotrienols much more expensive than tocopherols?
In nature, the level of tocotrienols is at such a low level (part per million level) that is it takes a huge amount of the raw material to extract out 1kg of tocotrienols. For example, for every 1000kg of soy fatty acid distillate, one can extract out about 70kg of the tocopherols. In comparison, every 1000kg of palm oil, one can only theoretically extract out 0.5kg of tocotrienols. In addition, the process to extract tocotrienols by molecular distillation is an expensive process compared to the convention distillation processes.
NOTE: In our office we use tocopherols with those patients with a history of heart problems. Namely, high blood pressure, hardening of the arteries, Coronary Heart Disease, cholesterol problems and diabetes. In these cases we use tocopherols with PCOH-Plus to reverse and prevent the above noted problems.
** Each capsule supplies:
Tocotrienols (from rice) 35mg
Vitamin E (d-alpha Tocpherol) 23 IU
with gelatin, glycerin & water
SUGGESTED USE: One (1) to two (2) capsules daily as a dietary supplement or as otherwise directed by a health care professional.
NOTE: Tocotrienols should not be taken with supplements containing Iron in order to prevent oxidation.
Contains: 60 Capsules