Vitamin A – Facts

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Did you know Vitamin A was given the first letter of the alphabet because it was the first vitamin to be discovered?

Vitamin A benefits our body in many ways:

  • keeps eyes healthy, 
  • helps cell growth
  • helps boost the immune system. 
  • maintains bone health
  • fights infections
  • helps maintain healthy tissues

Vitamin A is not only absorbed directly but it is also created by the body by converting beta carotene into vitamin A.

Sources of Vitamin A are:  eggs, milk, liver and meat. Beta carotene that the body can convert into vitamin A is found in many fruits and vegetables, especially the red, orange and green coloured ones.

What you really need to know
Consuming too much pure vitamin A can be toxic. Do not exceed the recommended daily allowance for vitamin A. The actual recommended allowance of vitamin A varies depending on a person’s age, sex and other factors. While exceeding the recommended daily allowance is toxic, there is a far higher limit to how much beta carotene can be consumed. So concentrate on getting the greatest amount of beta carotene which the body can then convert to vitamin A, rather than consuming vast quantities of pure vitamin A rich foods.

You must have been told several times that eating lots of carrots helps you to see in the dark. This is thanks to the Vitamin A that is produced from the high levels of beta carotene found in the vegetables.

Other foods which have high levels of beta carotene that can be converted to vitamin A include tomatoes and dark green leafy vegetables, such as spinach. Beta carotene is not only used to form vitamin A, but it is also a powerful antioxidant in itself. None of the beta carotene that is absorbed is wasted as any excess after conversion to vitamin A has taken place is used to fight the harmful free radicals within the body.

Vitamin A also helps fight infections and illnesses by helping tissues that line various parts of the body, including the eyes, mouth, nose, throat and lungs, to grow and also to repair them if they are damaged to prevent infection. Children also need plenty of vitamin A to help their bones and teeth to develop properly.

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Stay healthy!
Vidya Sury

After more than a decade in the corporate corporate work, I retired from my corporate career at 33 to focus on family. A change in priorities, and a passion for writing inspired me to start working from home and I am now living my dream as a writer and editor. I write content for clients, blog for businesses and edit manuscripts for publishers/authors. With six blogs of my own and published contributions across the web (The Huffington Post, PTPA, World of Moms, SheKnows), I writes to collect smiles and donate to charities. I shares stories about all the things I enjoy in life; parenting, mindful living, conversations, coffee, books, food, music, health, DIY, travel, photography and showing my diabetes who’s boss.

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