Vitamin A holds the common name Retinol, also called as Retinoid, Retinoic acid, Retinyl, Palmitate, and Retinyl Acetate. Naturally, there are two types of vitamin A – they are Retinoid and Pro-vitamin A. Retinoid gets more attention as the human body absorbs it easier than other types. Pro-vitamin A has the need to change into Retinoid to absorb by the body. A human body has the capacity of changing this process. It is a boon to vegetarians as we get retinol from meat and we get only pro-vitamin from vegetables and fruits. It is also called as carotenoid and beta-carotene. We have two types of vitamins, fat-soluble and fat dissoluble. Vitamin A belongs to fat-soluble types so we need fat in our body to make it absorbed by the body. Only with the help of fat, vitamin A can do miracles to our body. This vitamin has the property of staying in our body for a long time so this vitamin can be consumed once in a while. It is not required to have this vitamin daily.
Uses of this Vitamin
Most prominent job by this vitamin is to take care of eyes and eyesight, specifically helps in the vision during the night. The disease night blindness is caused mainly because of this vitamin deficiency. There are so many activities done by this vitamin. Some of them are listed below.
- Sharpening our eyesight; helps in night vision and helps with the segregation of colors.
- Helps with skeletal growth.
- Helps with the muscle growth.
- It regularizes our immunity system and white blood cells; It fights and protects our body from disease-creating bacteria.
- Stimulating hunger, creating an appetite, and helps in the digestive system.
- It prevents the common cold, flu, kidney related disorders, lung problems, and indigestion.
- Speeds the healing of bumps and blisters.
- Strengthens our teeth and gums.
- Strengthens the nails of our fingers, toes, and hair.
- Protects our lungs, kidney and many inner parts of our body.
- Helps in reproduction.
- Cell growth and regeneration
- Controls the level of fat in the blood.
- Counter attacks paralysis and heart-related diseases.
- Prevents wrinkles, knee pain, cataract, and fatigue during old age.
- Protects us from polluted air.
- Controls cancer cells and protects good cells from cancer cells.
Vitamin A rich foods
Vitamin A is available in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian foods. So we don’t have the need to create a new diet chart to include this vitamin.
- Milk-based foods
- Spinach varieties
- Tapioca tuber
- Green and yellow colored vegetables; Most of the greens have vitamin A in it.
- Most of the yellow colored fruits
- Available in cornflakes and oats
- Available in tablet forms too
Non- Vegetarian foods
- Parts of the liver in animals
- Fish (Fat filled fishes)
- Fish oil
Consumption of this vitamin
A healthy human consumption of vitamin A daily:
- Men – 0.8 to 1 milligram
- Women – 0.6 to 0.7 milligram
Pregnant women and lactating women should consume a bit more than the normal level. The same goes for youngsters and aged people. This level of vitamin should be consumed half in the morning and a half at night. Four days of this vitamin consumption is enough for rest of the week.
Persons who omit particular type of foods and vitamin A deficiency people may face many problems and diseases. The below diseases shows us the lack of vitamin in our body.
- Night blindness
- Color blindness
- Dry and puffed eyes
- Itching in our eyes
- Problems in eyelids
- Rarely losing eyesight
- Low immunity power
- Lack of growth in kids
- Weak bones, teeth, and gums
- Fatigue and tiredness
- Slows down healing
- Skin diseases, dry skin, and dry hair
- Frequent cold and breathing disorders
- Pimples and blisters
- Sudden weight loss
It does not mean the all above related problems happens because of the lack of this vitamin. But mostly it happens because of vitamin and protein deficiency.
Causes of over-consumption
Overconsumption of this vitamin may turn into toxic materials. It also affects the benefits of vitamin D. We can see about the problems of over-consumption of this vitamin.
- Giddiness, nausea, fainting
- Not feeling hunger, fatigue
- A headache
- Itching, cracks in the skin
- Pain in bones
- Irregular menstrual cycle
- Pregnant women should control the excess consumption of vitamin A as it may cause problems to the fetus. But this vitamin is necessary for the growth of the fetus, so right amount of this vitamin should be consumed.
- Liver disorders
- People who are addicted to drinking and smoking have a great chance of getting lung cancer.
- People who have excess fat and protein deficiency in the body will double their problems by consuming an excess amount of this vitamin.
What destroys this vitamin?
Vitamin A contradicts fat acids. So these acids will affect the work of this vitamin and prevents it from absorption in the body. Overheat and sunlight may destroy the vitamin A the food. So cooking in iron and copper utensils may lead to this problem. Soaking of vitamin A rich vegetables in water for a long time can also destroy the vitamin in it.