Nutrient to Know: Vitamin A

by in Food News, Nutrients to Know, June 11, 2009

We all know we should eat our veggies, but do you know why? Nutrients from whole foods provide plenty of amazing health benefits. To continue our series on common nutrients, this week we’re shining the spotlight on vitamin A (a.k.a. retinol and beta-carotene).

What is it?
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin — its two forms are retinol (commonly referred to as just “vitamin A”) and beta-carotene. Your body can convert beta-carotene into retinol. Both kinds of vitamin A are found in food, and eating either counts toward your daily needs.

Why is it good for you?
Vitamin A builds healthy skin, bones and eyes (night blindness is a symptom of A deficiency). Beta-carotene also works as a cell-protecting antioxidant.

But too much of a good thing is possible. Our bodies store excess vitamin A, so overdoing supplements can have some negative effects, including birth defects, liver damage and nervous system disorders. Studies have found that large doses of beta-carotene supplements can increase the risk of lung cancer, especially in smokers. But we’re just talking about overdoing the artificial vitamins found in supplements. Don’t limit those vitamin A-rich foods!

Where can I find it?
The retinol form of vitamin A is in butter, cheese, milk, egg yolks and liver. Beta-carotene hangs out in dark leafy greens; bright red, yellow, and orange veggies and fruits such as oranges, limes, pineapple, apricots and cantaloupe.

The daily recommended amount of vitamin A is 5000 IU. Sure, that sounds like a huge number, but it’s easier than you might think to get it without using supplements. Here are some tasty, natural ways to help you get your full daily dose:

1 medium carrot = 8666 IU (173%)
1 cup chopped red bell pepper = 4666 IU (93%)
1 cup cooked green peas = 1050 IU (21%)
1 cup diced cantaloupe = 5411 IU (108%)
1 cup sliced mango = 1262 IU (25%)
1 cup milk = 500 IU (10%)
1 medium peach = 319 IU (6%)
1 egg yolk = 245 IU (5%)

Want to learn more? Read up on how much vitamin E and choline you need daily.

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Comments (14)

  1. Krikri says:

    It appears many people are used to retinol though beta-carotene also refers to another aspect of the same vitamin. The carrot as an example of vitamin A is well-placed. If I look at the table provided, it has the most IU of 8666 compared to 245 from from an egg.How useful this simple, mostly overlooked ingredient is.

    There have been many references about the side effects of Vitamin A overdose but it needs be pointed out – like you right did – that organic substances rich in Vitamin A, like carrots, should be consumed as regular food without much dwelling on overdose fears.

  2. Vitamins says:

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I prefer to ask your permission as i have seen people attacking me that i am from another forum and i am simply taking ideas from there to post here. This is a disclaimer please. hello, When i visited Singapore last winter, i was amazed by a seminar organised by academics there. There presented what the OP has done here. Nice post! Hello, I Jacob from UCT South Africa, i am doing a research on this field for my Master’s project. I would be glad if you would permit me to cite this article in my dissertation. To all those who have nothing to contribute but shout at the post, i have a quote for you from Denis Thatcher: “Better keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than open it and remove all doubt.” Hello Admin, i guess it’s time to do some weeding here. Too much unproductive comments from posters Yeah ok Tom (yeah i know you), you have the guts to post such comments? At least respect the OP views! Hey Everyone, hope all are well! Posted my first topic here today, probably in the wrong spot, lol. I lurk here and there and belong to a few sites, thought it time to make this one of em . Thanks for having this spot here that I and others can enjoy and benefit from. I’ve been an active computer enthusiast for near 20 years always building and breaking my own. The last few years life has sucked me in and now when I emerge there’s all kinds of new things to confuse me, lol. Look forward to sharing your community and learning some in the process. hey all, my name is aaron, my buddies call me danger, maddangerous, something to that extent. ive been working with windows based computers for 17 years, since i was 5 (played duke nukem 3d and i was all in lmao) and am recently trying to learn linux for various reasons. in college i am a Computer Information Systems major, and im going from there to do stuff with networking, already taken a Cisco training class a few years ago, and i plan to get pretty deep into that. doing some programming here and there to learn, just trying to bolster my knowledge all around really, but we shall see how that goes. i also play guitar and bass, so im looking to learn about computer music in 2 manners, recording and things like that, and making electronic music, as i really dig trance or goa-psy trance, when im not headbanging to some metal of various sorts \m/ i also play with cars a bit, learning some mechanic work. id really like to be able to tune engine management, either tweak a stock ecm or tune a full on standalone, so if anyone knows that stuff here PLEAASSEE point me where to look to get started because im so lost so i’m here to learn, and to help out others with what i already know. ill see you all around, Cheers Im new to the site and decided to sign up to a tech forum because im losing my touch with technology since finishing my apprenticeship in IT. Basically i did an IT apprenticeship starting in september 2011 and finishing april 2012, but have been unemployed ever since and currently looking for work. Ive been lazy however and lost touch with alot of the knowledge i had gained on the apprenticeship, so i have decided to start using forums again, it worked with previous hobbies such as photography, writing, drawing and graphics design so i thought it should help with my computing again lmao. Anyways thats just a small segment from me and i hope i can learn the knowledge i lost and a lot more Hey, I’m new, this site looks like a pretty cool place to get tech help, so here I am. Hello people.Well, to put simply, I’m a guy who is interested in Technology with not a lot of knowledge (I think). I used to work at a relative’s computer store for a while, but didn’t know too much about computers but now I feel a slight urge in wanting to know more about new technology – Computer products, Mobile phones, Tablets, etc. My name is Devon and just looking for a place to hang and talk tech. I am a Ubuntu user and have been using it since 8.04 I am hoping I can get some experienced feedback from the professionals who have been there and done it and are currently doing it in the workforce as of today. Or any great advice will be greatly appreciated! So, I graduated with a Business degree and I am just working a regular desk job that I don’t really hate (as it pays the bills) at the same time, I feel like I can venture out to better opportunities or even a different career in Information Technology. I got some quick responses from e-mail from college professors and professionals, but there answers aren’t very specific and I even have a family member who is involved in this field (which led me to have interest), but I feel like his certification is “outdated” in terms of what I need to pursue first at this current stage. I am in no means to wanting to start from the top, but i want to do things step by step if it means opportunities in better advancement and also a career I might enjoy better than a regular desk job. SO ! my main question is – what is the best way to start at this current stage if I am looking to have a change in my career into the IT field. I’m new to this forum. I have built several custom builds over the last few years, I am possibly going to build a new rig this summer ( credit crunch pending ) So will be asking lots of stupid and probably easy questions. But will also try and comment and help others as well. Heres to the start of a great forum of learning and fun. I’m a newbie to this forum… I need useful information and suggestions abt technology amd sciemce. Hello, Just signed up. My name is Trey. I like electronics and try to keep up with the latest in tech. I have my own website and do youtube videos to give advice/help and for fun on anything tech that I know. See ya around. Hey there people. I’m Tom, aka TechProWannabe From The United Kingdom. i’m new here and I’m still trying to navigate around the site, so I’ll give my apologies now if I post a Thread in the wrong Forum. I’m here to give and seek information, to maybe make Friends and to enjoy being part of the community. Not that I know much about computing and components, however I will gladly give my incites where wanted. I’ve had my Acer Aspire 5336 Laptop for a number of years now, (nobody ever get this Laptop, it is indescribably bad) and I’m wanting to upgrade to a budget gaming PC. As my knowledge of computing is limited, I thought I’d join a Forum, to try and help those similar to me and to hopefully learn. My name is Jake and I have a new job working for a entrepreneur. I have to know a ton of stuff that I don’t and I figured you guys could help me. I have a friend who used to/uses this forum and hes brilliant. I will probably spend most of my time reading and not a whole lot posting, anyway that’s me thanks for allowing me to be here. Hi guys! I’ve been in to PC’s since I was a kid. I just got a new job as a desktop tech at an accounting firm. I know I will have many questions for you guys, but I will start with a simple hello! What’s up? My name is Jason, 29, I live in Schopp, Germany for the time being until I move back home to Denver, Colorado in August next year.I’m currently pursuing my Bachelor’s of Science degree in Computer Networking and Security. I’m joining this website in order to further make IT an everyday part of my life. I would like to learn and grow with you all as a future networking professional. My name is Ben, and I am currently living in the St. Louis, MO area doing work as a Network Controller. Hey my name is Dale. I’m an avid gamer with an interest for computers. Thanks for having me. Ha don’t know what else to say, if you wanna know more just ask me. Hey, my name is Isaiah. I’m currently learning JavaScript and other web development languages. I came to this forum to expand my knowledge about new stuff and science and possibly help some other people out if I can. I don’t play games much anymore but I was really into Minecraft a while ago, pretty much non-stop from early Alpha up until the full release when my interest began to fade. Oh, and Dwarf Fortress, can’t forget about that…. That game is… fun. Well, there are a few things about myself I suppose. Cheers! Hello all, I came here for answers, Not sure where to ask this, so I will ask here. right now I use 4 tools to get this job done and I seem to be repeating the information over to the next tool for each new client. I have been searching for this tool for awhile now and have not found one that will work, please let me know if one is out there. Hi everyone, I’m new here. I’m a marketing professional and the creator of the Chirt . I enjoy tech and gadgets, marketing and branding, audio/video production, etc. Hopefully I will find this forum useful! Greetings and salutations. I am called Jang by most English-speakers that speak to me on a regular basis. I am a programmer of about 3, 4 years of experience (mostly web, but recently client-side mobile) currently located in Seoul, Korea, with most of my adolescent and professional years spent in Toronto, Canada. Alright so after having this account for sometime I have finally made my first post. I have been a fan of these forums for years but just lurked and read through threads. So a little about myself. I grew up around computers. My grandfather taught me the basics of hardware, software, and self building. As an ’87 baby, the 90’s will always be that golden decade. I have always been a casual gamer bouncing back and forth between PC gaming and console gaming. The first games I remember playing were Hugo’s House of Horrors and Paper boy. Unfortunately, moving around and having to meet new people pulled me away from my technical/computer background. I joined the tech forums because I am in the midst of a career transition into IT or science. I’m looking forward to learning from those of you who are industry professionals, and to the shared learning experiences I will have with those who are just getting started like I am. My goals are to become A+ and Network+ certified this Spring/Summer and to get a job in IT soon after. Hi All! Well here I am falling on hard times again and needing to supplement the income from my photography business and after dealing with Apple products for the past six years. Now I’m falling back on skills I had repairing PC’s that I have used in the past and going back to a little “Mom & Pop” repair shop near my house and I’m going back to work solely with Windows. So needless to say I’m very rusty with my Windows skills. I’m here looking to learn some new skills and relearn skills that have diminished over the years there is a problem with the process of the program. I get on error. how can I solve the problem? I was a long time member of *3DGM* forums but it sadly has been dying over the past few years. I decided that this great forum would be a great place to make a fresh start! I have been on this site for a little bit but have not introduced myself yet. I know quite a bit about computer/xbox/OS hardware and software and verious other electronics. I’m very big on the retail side as well. I love building, fixing and modifying computer and had recently been looking for an online community to help build and grow in knowledge of what I love to do the most. Looking forward to working with you guys. Hey, my name is trixter108 and I am new to these forums. I guess what mativated me to join was to get feedback on my first computer build before i went out and built it. I am 18 years old and am in college. I have always been into tech and computers but sadly never found time to build one of my own. I love sports and play a different sport every season. I am a very athletic person and I love to go hiking and exploring. I am also and addrenaline junkie. I’ve been skydiving and bungee jumping and am always seeking out new ways to get an adrenaline rush. Anyways, I have never built a computer before, but never had the money nor time to do so. I hope these forums will give me constructive feedback and motivate me to finally buils my own computer. I am 17 year old, footballer, skater, non – biased between Android and iOS as it’s the most controversial topic and I write for my blog : My War with Entropy Good day. My name is Glen and I’m trying to learn the more complicated things in upgrading/building a PC. I am retired after working for 35 years in an inspection job in my City. I also love working with wood on the lathe (primirarily making pens) and am in the process of rebuilding and upgrading an old bans saw. When finished my final cost will be about $600 instead of $1200 for a new saw that would do the same thing. Glen, nice to have you here! Take a moment and view the forum rules. I think they will help you get comfortable with how things work around here, as well as getting familiar with the admins and mods. I just added this site to my bookmarks. I really like reading your posts. Thank you! I’ve meant to post about something like this on one of my blogs and this gave me an idea. Thank you. I just added your web site to my favorites. I enjoy reading your posts. Tyvm! I’m having a small issue I can’t subscribe your feed, I’m using google reader by the way. You made certain good points there. I did a search on the subject and found a good number of persons will agree with your blog. Your webpage is so useful … keep up the excellent work! Also, is your website theme a free one? and if so..can i have it? When I view your RSS feed it throws up a whole lot of trash, is the malfunction on my end? Straight to the point and written well, thanks much for the information Hey! I know this is kinda off topic however , I’d figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest authoring a blog article or vice-versa? My blog goes over a lot of the same topics as yours and I believe we could greatly benefit from each other. If you’re interested feel free to shoot me an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Terrific blog by the way! Hey – nice weblog, just looking around some blogs, seems a fairly good platform you might be using. I’m presently using WordPress for a few of my sites but looking to alter 1 of them more than to a platform similar to yours as being a trial run. Something in specific you’d suggest about it? I think that is an interesting point, it made me think a bit. Thanks for sparking my thinking cap. Sometimes I get so much in a rut that I just feel like a record. Kudos to you! This is a really good blog here and I love your style of writing. How did you get so good at blogging? Good day! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I really enjoy reading through your blog posts. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that cover the same subjects? Thanks a ton! Now i am the sole a single in my circle of buddies who works by using, are we weird? LoL As a Newbie, I am constantly searching online for articles that can benefit me. Thank you I know I’m a bit late in contributing my thoughts but this particular article created me feel. It was an absorbing weblog post. I’ve develop into a regular reader of one’s web site given that I came across your site a while back again. I cannot say that I concur with everything you stated but it was emphatically enlightening! I will be back again again quickly. Thank you for the wise critique. Me & my neighbour were preparing to do some research about that. We received a excellent book on that matter from our local library and most books exactly where not as influensive as your information. I am extremely glad to see these information which I was searching for a long time. Congratulations on having 1 of the most sophisticated blogs Ive arrive across in some time! 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