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From West Palm Beach, Florida, USA:

I have two daughters, ages 10 and 14, with diabetes, and I have recently read about the benefits of taking vitamin E to help people with diabetes possibly prevent certain complications. I have read in some articles that say taking to high a dose may be dangerous, possibly thinning the blood to much and may interfere with clotting. I definitely want to start them on a daily regimen of vitamin E and would appreciate it if you can tell me an appropriate dose for their ages.


Vitamin E, vitamin C, nicotinamide and alpha lipoic acid are all antioxidant food supplements which can be obtained without prescription in most supermarkets. Vitamin E especially has attracted especial interest as a means of combating the oxidative stress that seems to have a role in the development of vascular complications in diabetes. The RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance) for teenagers who are not on a diet high in unsaturated fat is between 8 and 30 IU/day depending on the authority. However, the studies that claimed a reduction in retinopathy and nephropathy have used amounts that are many times this, e.g. 1800 IU/day. Supplements for two months or so in amounts up to 3,200 IU/day do not seem to have been harmful, however.

In the August 1999 issue of Diabetes Care, a journal that would almost certainly be in any hospital library, there is an editorial on this theme which I think you should read because it ends up by pointing out that the studies to justify long term dietary supplementation with large doses of vitamin E have not yet been done.


Original posting 7 Mar 2001
Posted to Alternative Therapies and Explanations


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