Research on mice in Japan has suggested that too much Vitamin E may be damaging to bone health.
Links between Vitamin D and bone health have been well established, but the relationship between Vitamin E and bone health has been far less comprehensively researched. The latest research from Japan has suggested that large doses Vitamin E may result in lower bone mass.
Vitamin E can be found in oils, some green vegetables, almonds and hazelnuts. The researchers point out that Vitamin E in the diet is relatively low, but supplements contain a much higher dose than is found in a typical diet.
The scientists suggest that Vitamin E may help form cells called osteoclasts. These cells help to regulate the size and density of bones, and too many of them will strip away more bone cells than necessary.
Experts point out that the experiments were conducted on mice, and may not have the same results in humans. Previous research in rats has suggested that Vitamin E has the opposite effect and that it may in fact promote bone growth in treatments for older people.
Dr Helen Macdonald from Aberdeen University indicated that there had been a number of small studies highlighting the potential negative effects of Vitamin E.
Dr Macdonald was keen to stress that people do not necessarily need to alter their diet, but added: “There is increasing evidence that taking supplements doesn’t do any good, and if anything, may be doing harm.”