Health Benefits And Best Food Sources Of Vitamin A
Vitamin A is an important component of a healthy diet. This fat-soluble vitamin is essential for strong bones and healthy visions, skin, and body tissue. It also works as a protective antioxidant to fight free radicals that are programmed to create disease.
Without adequate amounts of vitamin A, you’ll have a tough time keeping your tissues, organs, and immune system healthy.
Cell growth and division relies on vitamin A; supporting the healthy function of your heart, lungs, liver, and other major organs, according to experts at Livescience.
Vitamin A Benefits
In order to have a healthy body you need adequate amounts of vitamin A each day. Healthy Eating SFGate recommends 700 micrograms for women each day and 900 for men.
Moreover, because of the importance of this vitamin in a baby’s development, nursing and pregnant women need even more, approximately 800 micrograms and 1100, respectively.
Other Benefits Include:
Prevents Urinary Stones – Vitamin A plays a role in ensuring the health of the lining or your urinary tract, which reduces the chances of infection or the formation of urinary stones.
Strong Teeth and Bones – This vitamin helps protect your teeth by producing dentin, a hard layer just beneath the surface of your teeth. It also supports healthy bones.
Strengthens Vision - According to experts at Organicfacts.net, vitamin A helps keep your eyes moist, improves night vision, and grants your eyes the ability to naturally adjust to light changes. Studies also show adequate amounts of this vitamin reduce the risk of developing cataracts and muscular degeneration; both associated with aging.
Boosts Immunity – Vitamin A keeps mucus membranes moist, increases white cell function, and triggers your lymphocytic response against disease causing free radicals. This vitamin may also block out germs and help battle against infections.
Enhanced Skin Health – By battling free radicals, vitamin A prevents damage to your skin, hair, and nails. This essential vitamin also helps keep your skin soft and healthy looking, so it doesn’t get dry or develop a skin condition like eczema.
Deters Cancer And Acne – Vitamin A is an extremely powerful antioxidant that can help lower the risk of various cancers. It also flushes out toxins that can trigger acne.
Reduces The Natural Signs Of Aging – You will find vitamin A in many skin creams because of its wrinkle reduction properties; reducing the signs of fine lines, dark spots, and other skin discoloration. This vitamin helps to improve the overall visual health of your skin.
Strengthens Reproductive Health – Many health experts recommend increasing vitamin A to improve reproductive function.
Vitamin A Sources
The two main types of vitamin A are preformed vitamin A (retinol) and pro-vitamin A. Retinol is in animal products like fortified milk, cheese, yogurt, milk, eggs, kidney, and liver. You’ll find pro-vitamin A in plant foods, like fresh vegetables and fruit, according to livescience.com.
The most common form of pro-vitamin A is beta-carotene, which is found in dark green and brightly colored foods.
- Great Sources Of Vitamin A
- Sweet potato cooked with skin (1 med - 1050 mcg)
- Pumpkin (1/2 cup - 1000 mcg)
- Carrots (1 cup - 1000 mcg)
- Butternut squash (1 cup – 1200 mcg)
- Kale (1/2 cup – 500 mcg)
- Spinach (1 cup – 1000 mcg)
- Romaine lettuce (1 cup – 260 mcg)
- Red peppers (1/2 cup – 100 mcg)
- Dried apricots (1/4 cup – 200 mcg)
- Cantaloupe (1 cup 250 mcg)
- Cheddar cheese (1.5 ounce – 150 mcg)
- Skim milk (1 cup – 160 mcg)
- Soy milk (1 cup – 100 mcg)
- Tuna (2.5 ounce – 550 mcg)
- Salmon (2.5 – 115 mcg)
- Beef liver (2.5 ounce – 5800 mcg)
- Chicken liver (2.5 ounce – 3200 mcg)
- Eggs (2 med – 200 mcg)
- Cod liver oil (1 tsp – 1300 mcg)
In developed countries, vitamin A deficiency is very rare. By eating a well-balanced diet with lean meat, milk products, and plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, you’ll give your body this essential vitamin to support optimal health for many years to come.
Hope this helps you on your quest to fabulous health!