Tocopherols

Tocopherol, a class of fat-soluble compound with vitamin E activity, is best known for its antioxidant activity. It is synthesized only in photosynthetic organisms and acts as a protective component. Tocopherol has also been found to be crucial for seed storage and germination (Maeda & DellaPenna, 2007). Vegetable oils, including soybean, sunflower, and almond oil, are rich in tocopherol. Tocopherol is also found in other food sources, such as peanuts, asparagus, tomatoes, and carrots. Some animal fats also contain tocopherol, however, in a much lower amount than that of vegetable oils (Shahidi & Shukla, 1996). Commercial vitamin E supplements are marketed for their antioxidant functions to protect cell membranes from oxidative damage in human body. There are several good reviews of the antioxidant functions of tocopherol in foods and in body systems (Choe & Min, 2009; Halliwell, 1996; Kamal-Eldin & Appelqvist, 1996).

1 Product