Assessment of the safety of high-dose, short-term supplementation with vitamin E in healthy older adults

Am J Clin Nutr. 1994 Nov;60(5):704-9. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/60.5.704.


The effect of daily supplementation of 800 mg dl alpha-tocopheryl acetate for 30 d on general health, nutrient status, hepatic and renal function, intermediary metabolism, hematological status, plasma nutrients and antioxidant status, thyroid hormones, and urinary creatinine concentrations was studied in 32 healthy elderly (> 60 y) people who participated in a double-blind, placebo-controlled, residential trial. The subjects reported no side effects due to the supplements. Supplementation had no effect on body weight, plasma total protein, albumin, glucose, total cholesterol and triglycerides, conjugated and unconjugated bilirubin, alkaline phosphatase, indicators of hepatic and renal function, hematologic status, thyroid hormones, or serum and urinary creatinine concentrations and creatinine clearance. Supplementation did cause a significant increase in serum vitamin E, and a small (5%) but significant (P < 0.05) increase in plasma zinc in the vitamin E-supplemented group. Thus, short-term supplementation with 800 mg vitamin E/d has no adverse effect on healthy older adults.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Blood Cell Count
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Food, Fortified*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Function Tests
  • Lipids / blood
  • Liver Function Tests
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reference Values
  • Thyroid Hormones / blood
  • Time Factors
  • Vitamin E / administration & dosage
  • Vitamin E / adverse effects
  • Vitamin E / blood
  • Vitamin E / pharmacology*


  • Lipids
  • Thyroid Hormones
  • Vitamin E