The scientists from Keio University in Tokyo claim that vitamin E supplements can weaken the bones. According to the BBC, their conclusion is based on the experiments with mice.
The experts have found that rodents, which were treated with these supplements, demonstrated a loss of bone mass. In their opinion, if the experiments on humans have a similar result, it will help in preventing the destruction of the bones.
As the scientists note, the effect of various vitamins (e.g., vitamin D) on bone health has already been studied a lot. However, the influence of vitamin E contained in vegetable oils, green vegetables, cereals, and nuts on the health of bone tissue is practically unknown. That is why the scientists are determined to find out what its benefit is and whether it is harmful.
A team of specialists used to monitor the state of mice with a vitamin E deficiency, and after eight weeks they found that the bone in the body of the mice was heavier than in the healthy mice that were receiving supplements (the bone mass was reduced by 20%). As explained by the Japanese scientists, bone strength is preserved when there is a balance between osteoblasts (bone producing cells) and osteoclasts (the cells that destroy the bone). Despite the fact that earlier work in this area had proved that vitamin E had a positive effect on bone health, the Japanese scientists have refuted their findings: an additive promotes the development of osteoclasts.
Dr Helen MacDonald from Aberdeen University supported the conclusions of her colleagues about the ability of vitamin E to significantly reduce the density of bone tissue, but stressed that there was no need to stop taking supplements with vitamin E, as a series of additional experiments were planned for the near future.
The study of the Japanese scientists was published in the Nature Medicine Journal.