Vitamin A – Benefits and Deficiency Symptoms

Vitamin A, also known as retinol, is essential to the formation of visual purple in the retina, which allows vision in dim light. It helps your eyes adjust to light changes when you come in from outside and also helps keep your eyes, skin and mucous membranes moist. Vitamin A mostly comes from animal foods, but some plant-based foods supply beta-carotene, which your body then converts into Vitamin A. Vitamin A deficiency is rare in the United States, but it can cause night blindness, eye inflammation, diarrhea and other problems. Overconsumption of vitamin A can cause nausea, irritability and blurred vision in its mild form. Vitamin A toxicity can cause growth retardation, hair loss and enlarged spleen and liver in its more severe form. Vitamin A overdose can also cause birth defects and has been linked to increased risk of bone fractures in some people. Like other vitamins, vitamin A does not replace food and in fact, it cannot be assimilated without food.

Benefits of vitamin A to us:-

1. Vitamin A improves our vision and prevents night blindness.

2. This vitamin promotes formation of strong bones.

3. Vitamin A supplements may help kids who have respiratory problem.

4. Act as anti-oxidant, helping to protect our cells against cancer and other disease.

5. It can improve skin condition like acne or psoriasis.

6. Vitamin A guards us against bacterial, viral, parasitic infections.

Deficiency Symptoms of vitamin A

1. BitotÂ’s spot.

2. Night blindness.

3. Conjunctival xerosis.

4. Corneal xerosis.

5. Keratomalacia.

Sources of vitamin A

1. Spinach and collard greens.

2. Egg yolk.

3. Fortified milk.

4. Sweet potato and Broccoli.

5. Pumpkin and carrots.

6. Cheddar cheese.