Before we get into Vitamin E toxicity, let’s go over something really quick. Vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin and vitamin overdose is usually a big issue with fat soluble vitamins (i.e. Vitamin D). Fortunately, Vitamin E toxicity and the side effects of taking too much Vitamin E is not something to be too concerned about.
Although Vitamin E is not toxic if too much is taken… it can create some problems. For instance, it can impair blood clotting (becoming an anti-coagulant) if taken in very large doses. What happens is too much Vitamin E will overwhelm the vitamin K in your body (which is produced in the colon) and this will prevent platelet aggregation.
Anti-coagulant?… platelet aggregation?… What does this mean exactly? Let me explain.
When you cut yourself, you start to bleed. After a little bit you’ll notice the bleeding will slow down, stop and a scab will form. When the scab forms this means your blood is “coagulating” and “platelet aggregation” is occurring.
So this means one of the side effects of Vitamin E is it causes more thinning of the blood… making it harder to form clots and stopping you from bleeding.
Quick confession: According to Maret G. Traber, Ph. D, professor at the Linus Pauling Institute, you probably won’t find any studies done that demonstrate effects of Vitamin E toxicity or Vitamin E overdose. That being said, the upper limit of 1,000mg of Vitamin E per day is a conservative limit. And that’s a good thing.
But if you have the sudden urge to want to test the waters and see what happens when you take too much Vitamin E… just send me the results & “experiment” you conducted and I’ll submit it to the Darwin Awards for you (please, no pictures necessary).
Okay, back to the main topic at hand…
Vitamin E overdose doesn’t appear to be a risk when taken orally or in supplement form. This is probably because not all of it is completely absorbed by your body (for various reasons).
In summary Vitamin E is a very important antioxidant to get into your diet. Vitamin E overdose is something you shouldn’t be too worried about as long as you’re not overdoing it by keeping your intake to less than 1,000mg a day.
Taking at least 100mg per day is your best bet if you want to get the full benefits of Vitamin E. And the best way to do this is through proper supplementation.