Tocotrienols are a group of compounds in the same family as vitamin E. They have been used to ease swelling in the body and as an antioxidant to help slow damage to cells. They have also been used to prevent scarring.
Tocotrienols are found in many food products such as vegetable oils and oats. It can also be taken as a pill. Tocotrienols can also be applied to the skin as an oil.
200 milligrams 1 to 3 times daily
What Research Shows
May Be Effective
May Not Be Effective
Not Enough Data to Assess
Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.
It is likely safe to use tocotrienols on the skin and to take them orally in small doses for a short time. Not enough studies have been done to say whether they are safe to use for a long period. It is also not known whether it is safe to take by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse.
A. Brain white matter
A1. Gopalan Y, Shuaib IL, et al. Clinical investigation of the protective effects of palm vitamin E tocotrienols on brain white matter. Stroke. 2014;1422-1428.
B. Breast Cancer
B1. Nesaretnam K, Selvaduray KR, et al. Effectiveness of tocotrienol-rich fraction combined with tamoxifen in the management of women with early breast cancer: a pilot clinical trial. Breast Cancer Res. 2010;12(5):R81.
C1. Baliarsingh S, Beg ZH, et al. The therapeutic impacts of tocotrienols in type 2 diabetic patients with hyperlipidemia. Atherosclerosis. 2005 Oct;182(2):367-374.
D. High Cholesterol
D1. Mustad VA, Smith CA, et al. Supplementation with 3 compositionally different tocotrienol supplements does not improve cardiovascular disease risk factors in men and women with hypercholesterolemia. Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Dec;76(6):1237-1243.
E. Kidney Disease
E1. Daud ZA, Tubie B, et al. Vitamin E tocotrienol supplementation improves lipid profiles in chronic hemodialysis patients. Vasc Health Risk Manag. 2013;9:747-761.
F. Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
F1. Magosso E, Ansari MA, et al. Tocotrienols for normalization of hepatic echogenic response in nonalcoholic fatty liver: a randomised placebo-controlled clinical trial. Nutr J. 2013;12(1):166.
F2. Pervez MA, Khan DA, et al. Effects of Delta-tocotrienol Supplementation on Liver Enzymes, Inflammation, Oxidative stress and Hepatic Steatosis in Patients with Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease. Turk J Gastroenterol. 2018;29(2):170-176.
G. Surgical Scars
G1. Khoo TL, Halim AS, et al. A prospective, randomised, double-blinded trial to study the efficacy of topical tocotrienol in the prevention of hypertrophic scars. J Plast Reconstr Aesthet Surg. 2011 Jun;64(6):e137-145.
Last reviewed July 2019 by EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC
Last Updated: 3/27/2020
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