Recent studies in
have shown that 25000 IU of Vitamin A prompts the ability of insulin to control blood sugar levels in diabetic patients. However, with a Required Dietary Intake of 2500 IU, Vitamin A overdose is associated with serious diseases including liver cirrhosis. Scientists are working towards exploring safer Vitamin A derivatives which are effective and can be prescribed in higher doses. Australia
What is Vitamin A?
|Chemical Structure of |
Vitamin A is a fat soluble nutrient which is stored in the liver. Vitamin A is present in the body in various chemical forms called retinoids.
Though the role of Vitamin A in preventing night blindness and cataract are well known, Vitamin A was used in early 1940s to treat a host of skin disorders including acne, pimples and psoriasis. However due to the high risk of toxicity associated with high dosage of Vitamin A, this was discontinued. Currently Retinoic acid, a vitamin A derivate and a prescription drug, is used for treatment of acne and a host of other skin conditions.
Major Benefits of Vitamin A: Vitamin A for Skin, Eyes and Immunity
The role of Vitamin A in enhancing health has been explicit. Vitamin A benefits humans in more than one way,
- Vitamin A is known for its ability to maintain vision and fight conditions like night blindness. This Vitamin is a key constituent of the chemicals found in the retina, which are essential for a normal vision. In addition Vitamin A helps the eye adjust to changes in the intensity of light. Vitamin A is effective in management of dry eye complains.
- Vitamin A is considered beneficial in treatment of skin problems. The nutrient promotes healing of wounds, burns and ulcers. Its role in improving conditions like dry skin, eczema, psoriasis and rasacea has been proven time and again.
- Vitamin A is crucial in enhancing immunity of the body. Vitamin A is vital to fight common infections like common cold, flu and other types of upper respiratory tract infections. Studies have shown that Vitamin A is effective in repairing lung tissue and reducing the attacks of auto-immune disorders like Asthma. The role of this Vitamin in management of irritable bowel disease and gastric ulcers is noteworthy, due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
|Animal Liver is packed|
with Vitamin A
Vitamin A Toxicity: Natural Sources of Vitamin A
- Vitamin A toxicity can manifest in the form of generalized weakness and vomiting.
- Consistently high levels of the vitamin are associated with liver cirrhosis.
- In addition other symptoms associated with Vitamin A toxicity include hair fall, brittle nails, bleeding gums, fatigue, nausea and irritability
- Vitamin A intake in pregnant females should be limited. Studies have shown that consuming more than 2500 IU of Vitamin A each day is closely linked with birth defects in the infant.
Normal vegetarian diet comprising of carotenoid rich vegetables and fruits rarely result in Vitamin A toxicity. However inclusion of too much liver or oily fish may occasionally result in an overdose. It should be noted that a mere 125 grams of polar bear liver can provide as much as 2 million IU of Vitamin A, a situation that can result in acute toxicity.
Some of the natural sources of Vitamin A include egg yolks, organ meat such as liver (which provides Vitamin A in high concentration), Apple, green leafy vegetables, mango, tomatoes, prunes are some of the rich sources of Vitamin A.