Vitamin A helps to do more than have a clear vision during the night. A fat-soluble vitamin, this nutrient plays a key role in immunity, the body’s development and maintenance of major organs.
Vitamin A is present in both animal and plant sources. The only difference is that, vitamin A from animal sources is preformed vitamin A which is active instantly whereas, the one from plant sources is provitamin A (including a group of carotenoids like beta-carotene) which must be converted in the body to the active form of vitamin A.
Once active, both forms of vitamin A aid to protect eyesight, fight infections, maintain healthy skin and bones and regulate cell growth and division. Decreased levels of vitamin A can lead to night blindness, skin disorders or infections. This nutrient also plays a vital role in the development and maintenance of the heart, lungs, kidneys and other organs.
Every day Sources of Vitamin A
Opt for any of the colorful and tasty means to meet your daily vitamin A needs. Each medium baked sweet potato provides more than a day’s worth of the recommended daily vitamin A. Red bell peppers, carrots and cantaloupes are other valuable plant sources of vitamin A.
While red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables often steal the vitamin A spotlight, leafy greens such as collards, kale and turnip greens are also excellent sources. Animal sources of vitamin A include eggs, organ meats such as liver and milk fortified with vitamin A.
So, with these many sources of vitamin A easily available, it should not be a problem to meet your daily needs with food. Talk to your health care provider/nutritionist before starting on any supplements. Be cautious that superfluous intake of vitamin A from certain supplements can result in more harm than good. To avoid such issues and stay safe on a balanced nutrient intake level, you can reach out to a nutritionist/dietitian at www.firsteatright.com to help you chart out a healthy diet plan that includes nutritious foods from the Vitamin A category.