Vitamin A is generally found as Beta-Carotene and Retinol and converted to Vitamin A in the body.
These previtamins are generally found in plants, liver, egg yolk, cheese, and milk.
How This Vitamin Works in Your Body:
Aids in treatment of some eye disorders, including prevention of night blindness and formation of visual purple in the eye
Promotes bone growth, teeth development, reproduction
Helps form and maintain healthy skin, hair, mucous membranes
Builds body's resistance to respiratory and other infections (including measles in the third world)
May help treat acne, impetigo, boils, carbuncles and open ulcers when applied externally
May help control glaucoma
Potential guard against effects of pollution and smog--beta-carotene acts as an antioxidant (see Glossary)
May speed healing
Possibly helps remove age spots
May improve immunity
May help heal skin lesions, cuts and wounds
Possible treatment for hyperthyroidism
Who Should Take This:
Anyone with inadequate caloric or nutritional dietary intake or increased nutritional requirements
Those who abuse alcohol or other drugs
People with a chronic wasting illness or prolonged fever
Those under excess stress for long periods
Anyone who has recently undergone surgery
People with recent severe burns or injuries
Malnourished children with impaired immunity
Where This Vitamin is Found:
How to Use:
Liquid: the best form due to its high bioavailability and fast absorption. Always choose liquid as your first choice when supplementing your diet.
Recommended Daily Intakes
Men: 1000 mcg RE (3333 IU)
Women: 800 mcg RE (2666 IU)
Pregnancy: 800 mcg RE (2666 IU)
Lactation: +500 mcg RE (1666 IU)
Consult your doctor if you have:
Intestinal disease with diarrhea
Liver disease/liver enlargement
Overactive thyroid function
Disease of the pancreas
Take carefully to avoid toxicity.
Always consult doctor during pregnancy. Keep within DRI.
Always consult doctor during lactation. Keep within DRI.
Heat and/or moisture may alter the vitamin. Refrigeration is recommended.
Symptoms of Deficiency:
Symptoms include night blindness, lack of tear secretion, changes in eyes--eventual blindness if deficiency is severe and untreated, susceptibility to infectious diseases, especially respiratory, dry, rough skin, weight loss, poor bone growth, weak tooth enamel, diarrhea, slow growth, acne, insomnia, and fatigue.
Signs of Overdose:
Bleeding from gums or sore mouth
Bulging soft spot on head in babies
Hydrocephaly (water on the brain)
Confusion or unusual excitement
Peeling skin on lips, palms and in other areas;
Enlarged spleen and liver
Reaction or effect: What to do:
Abdominal pain Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Appetite loss Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Bone or joint pain Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Discomfort, tiredness or weakness Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Drying or cracking of skin or lips Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Fever Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Hair loss Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Headache Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Increase in frequency of urination Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Increased sensitivity of skin to sunlight Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Irritability Discontinue. Refer to your doctor soon.
Vomiting Discontinue. Consult doctor immediately.
Interacts with: Combined effect:
Antacids Absorption of vitamin A decreased.
Calcium supplements May decrease efficacy of calcium supplementation.
Cholestyramine, colestipol Absorption of vitamin A reduced.
Mineral oil, neomycin Absorption of vitamin A reduced.
Olestra-fat substitute Vitamin-A and beta-carotene absorption reduced.
Oral contraceptives Vitamin-A concentrations increased.
Vitamin E Reduce vitamin-E levels over time.
Tobacco/ Alcohol Decreases absorption of vitamin.