Important Facts About Vitamin A
Important Facts About Vitamin A
Vitamin A is important in promoting growth, preventing blindness, building new tissues and protecting against infection. Vitamin A exists in nature in two forms : a form present in plants , carotene and a form present in animals. Most of the vitamin A in our diet exist in the carotene form and our bodies convert it to become usable. Vitamin E aids the absorption of Vitamin A.
Vitamin A and Mental Illness
Insomia, fatigue, depression and nerve pains in the extremities maybe a sign of Vitamin A deficiency. Vitamin A levels decrease under stress, and Vitamin A is important in the manufacture of “antistress” adrenal hormones. Thus, 25,000 IUs of Vitamin A supplement is recommended for patients suffering from anxiety.
In the case of Anorexia Nervosa, one type of mental illness, the betacarotene form of Vitamin A is significantly elevated in the bloodstream of the patient. The patient suffering from Anorexia Nervosa loses his appetite and takes so little food that makes him severely emaciated. Since lack of appetite is a symptom of excessive Vitamin A, the finding of excessive beta-carotene in the blood of patients with Anorexia Nervosa seemingly has a great significance.
Lowering High Cholesterol with Vitamin A
One hundred thousand units of Vitamin A acetate for four to six months lowered cholesterol levels in person with high cholesterol and hardening of arteries.
Vitamin A and Cancer
Dr. Michael B. Sporn of the National Cancer Institue proposes that Vitamin A and substances chemically related to Vitamin A can make significant contributions to the prevention of cancer. More than half of all human cancers start in the “epithelial tissue”. Epithelial tissue forms the lining of organs and glands such as mammary glands, skin and passages in the body. The lungs, gut, bladder and reproductive organs are all lined with epithelial tissues. The epithelial tissue depends on Vitamin A for its normal development. Without adequate Vitamin A, these epithelial cells often undergo precancerous changes.
Laboratory studies reveal that animals deficient in Vitamin A have increased vulnerability to cancer-causing chemicals or carcinogens. Vitamin A protects animals given such chemicals from stomach, lung, respiratory, and uterine cancer.
A recent study of over 8000 Norwegian men who observed a diet sufficient in Vitamin A significantly reduces smokers’s chances of developing lung cancer. In addition, Vitamin A and some closely related substances can actually reverse precancerous changes in cell of the prostrate gland.
Sources of Vitamin A
The plant form of Vitamin A is richly present in green leafy vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, and alfalfa, in yellow tubers like carrots and in fruits. One carrot contains 11,000 IU of carotene.
Department of Agriculture recommendation for daily allowances of Vitamin A are as follows:
1500 IUs for infants
3000 IUs for children up to 12
6000 IUs for adults.
Vitamin Secrets published by ROGEN INTERNATIONAL
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