Importance of Vitamin A
What is Vitamin A?
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that is naturally present in many foods. Vitamin A is important for normal vision, the immune system, and reproduction. Vitamin A also helps the heart, lungs, kidneys, and other organs work properly.
There are two different types of vitamin A. The first type, preformed vitamin A, is found in meat, poultry, fish, and dairy products. The second type, provitamin A, is found in fruits, vegetables, and other plant-based products. The most common type of provitamin A in foods and supplements is beta-carotene.
Functions of Vitamin A
Some of the major functions of Vitamin A are:
Vitamin A can aid in improving vision. It enables your eyes to adjust to light changes, keeps the eyes moist, and also improves night vision. It can prevent many conditions like dry eyes as well. Vitamin A helps in the formation of visual purple in the eyes, which can improve the vision of weak eyes. Vitamin A ensures a healthy retina and also prevents night blindness by increasing the adaptability of the human eye to both bright light and darkness. It can also significantly cut down the risks of cataracts and macular degeneration, which is commonly associated with aging. It ensures healthy and beautiful eyes. It is also thought to be beneficial for people suffering from glaucoma.
Improves Skin Health
Vitamin A helps to keep your body free from free radicals and toxins, which might cause damage to your skin. It helps to keep the skin soft and supple by ensuring moisture retention, thereby preventing dryness, and keratinization and skin conditions like psoriasis.
Vitamin A enhances the body’s immunity against infections by increasing the lymphocytic responses against disease-causing antigens. It keeps the mucus membranes moist to ensure better immunity and also enhances the activity of white blood cells. It not only prevents the germs from entering your body, but also helps to fight the infections once the germs gain entry into the body system, thereby ensuring a double core of protection.
Prevents Urinary Stones
Vitamin A prevents the formation of urinary calculi due to the formation of calcium phosphate. It also helps to keep the lining of the urinary tract in shape, thereby reducing the recurring chance of stones.
Strong Bones and Teeth
Vitamin A strengthens the bones and teeth. It helps in the formation of dentin, a layer of hard material just below the surface of the teeth, thereby enhancing its strength.
It lowers blood cholesterol levels, thereby protecting you against the serious risks of heart disease and stroke.
Healthy Reproductive System
Vitamin A is widely known for aiding the health and functionality of the reproductive system.
Vitamin A helps to cut down excess sebum production, thereby reducing the risk of acne. It also reinforces the protective tissues of the skin, thereby enhancing the overall health and vitality of the skin surface. Vitamin A is essential for the proper maintenance of the skin tissues and mucus membranes. It flushes out the toxins from your body and cleanses the system by virtue of its antioxidant properties.
Prevents Certain Cancers:
Vitamin A is also a powerful antioxidant, which can prevent certain forms of cancer.
Repair and Replacement of Old Tissues
Vitamin A plays an important role in replacing old and worn out tissues with new ones, as well as in keeping your bones and teeth strong.
Slows the Aging Process
Vitamin A is famous for its wrinkle-eliminating properties, which can reduce age spots and fine lines. It can slow down the aging process by enhancing the overall health of the skin.
How much vitamin A do I need?
The amount of vitamin A adults need is:
- 0.7mg a day for men
- 0.6mg a day for women
You should be able to get all the vitamin A you need from your daily diet.
Any vitamin A your body doesn’t need immediately is stored for future use. This means you don’t need it every day. Vitamin A is measured in International Units (IU), and the average adult needs about 5000 IU per day.
Vitamin A Source
Below is the list of food items which are rich in vitamin A.