Vitamin E is a lipophilic vitamin and thus is naturally occurring mainly in high-fat plant products such as oils, nuts, germs, seeds, and in lower amounts in vegetables and some fruits. The term “vitamin E” comprises different structures that are classified as tocopherols, tocotrienols, and “vitamin E-related structures.” Vitamin E follows the same route in the body like other lipophilic substances. In brief, vitamin E is absorbed in the intestine, packaged into chylomicrons together with other lipophilic molecules, and distributed via lymph and blood in the body. As the liver is the central organ in lipoprotein metabolism, it is also essential for the uptake, distribution, metabolism, and storage of vitamin E. Based on the current knowledge on that field, the physiological, nonphysiological, and pathophysiological factors influencing the hepatic handling of vitamin E, verifying the crucial role of the liver in vitamin E homeostasis, are described.
Part of the book: Vitamin E in Health and Disease