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Carrots

What does Vitamin A do?

Vitamin A plays important roles in multiple body functions. It maintains the integrity of the cornea (in the eye); plays a role in skin, bone, and teeth growth; has immune functions and also helps regulate the production of reproductive hormones.

Basically, Vitamin A plays a role in a lot of the different things we need in our everyday life like vision, healthy skin, bone and teeth growth, and is important for both protecting our bodies and reproduction.

 

Am I getting enough Vitamin A?

Vitamin A deficiency in the US is rare but there are a few groups that are at higher risk for Vitamin A deficiency. These include premature infants; children and women in developing countries; and individuals with cystic fibrosis.

What happens if I don’t get enough or get too much Vitamin A?

Vitamin A deficiency is rare in the US but symptoms include being unable to see in low light and can lead to blindness if it isn’t treated. Vitamin A deficiency is one of the leading causes of blindness in developing countries.

Too much Vitamin A can also be harmful but generally only occurs from taking supplements and certain medication. Symptoms of Vitamin A toxicity include dizziness, nausea, headaches, and coma. Too much Vitamin A may also affect pregnant women and cause birth defects.

What are good sources of Vitamin A?

Eating a balanced diet ensures receiving adequate amounts of Vitamin A, the following foods are good sources of Vitamin A:

  • Salmon
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Other vegetables that are green, orange, and yellow like broccoli, carrots, and squash
  • Some fruits (cantaloupe, apricots, and mangos)
  • Dairy products
  • Fortified breakfast cereals

If you have a question, please do not hesitate to reach out. For more information, check out the National Institute of Health’s Vitamin A Fact Sheet.

1 Comment

  1. Bablofil says:

    Thanks, great article.

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