WHAT IS VITAMIN A?
Vitamin A is actually a group of chemical substances with similarities in structure rather than a single substance. These substances include beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, gamma-carotene, retinol, retinaldehyde, retinoic acid, and provitamin A caretenoids such as cryptoxanthin. One of the most prevalent forms of vitamin A found in food and supplements is retinol, which is found in mammals, and beta-carotene, which is found in plants.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF VITAMIN A?
Vitamin A, an essential fat-soluble vitamin, plays crucial roles in maintaining skin health, supporting eyesight, boosting the immune system, and regulating gene transcription. The benefits of VITAMIN A include:
- Keeps skin healthy: Many people believe that vitamin A is an effective therapy for age-related skin changes, such as wrinkles and age spots, as well as acne. But whether you can use vitamin A-based skin treatments like tablets or creams or include foods high in vitamin A in your diet, it’s vital to use vitamin A for skin health with caution. A lack of vitamin A has been linked to an increased risk of acne as it makes your hair follicles produce too much of protein called keratin. Consuming insufficient amounts of vitamin A can cause clogged sweat glands, which raises your risk of acne. Hypervitaminosis, or an excess of vitamin A, may dry out and discolour your skin.
- Antioxidant powerhouse: The provitamin A carotenoids beta carotene, alpha carotene, and beta cryptoxanthin are precursors to vitamin A and have antioxidant qualities. Carotenoids shield your body from free radicals, highly reactive chemicals that might harm you by causing oxidative stress. Chronic illnesses like diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and cognitive loss have all been related to oxidative stress. Many of these diseases, including heart disease, lung cancer, and diabetes, are related with a lower risk of foods rich in carotenoids.
- Keeps our eyes healthy: Vitamin A is needed to turn the light that enters your eye into an electrical signal which can be transmitted to your brain. Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is one eye illness that may be fended off with enough vitamin A intake. According to studies, having greater blood levels of beta, alpha, and beta cryptoxanthin can lower your risk of AMD by up to 25%. The protection of retinal tissue by carotenoid nutrients against oxidative stress is associated with this risk reduction. However, a recent Cochrane analysis discovered that beta-carotene supplements by themselves cannot stop or delay the loss of vision brought on by AMD.
Despite the numerous health claims and advantages, it is important to speak with a doctor or physician before consuming Vitamin A pills so they can examine you and, if necessary, prescribe you Vitamin A medication. Your body may suffer negative consequences if you do it alone.
HOW DOES VITAMIN A WORK IN HUMAN BODY?
When taken orally or applied on the skin, vitamin A is essential for preserving the body’s general health. When vitamin A is consumed, it breaks down in the small intestine and sent to the liver, where it is transformed into its active form, retinol. Retinol flows from the liver into the blood stream, where it travels to numerous tissue and organs and exerts an biological effects. Retinol enters cells and binds to retinoic acid receptors (RARs), which control various biological functions and influence the regulation of genes.
Retinoids and retinol, which are derivatives of vitamin A that can be applied externally in skincare products, function differently. They interact with certain receptors called retinoic acid receptors (RARs) and retinoid X receptors (RXRs) that are present in skin cells. These receptors control gene expression and have an impact on many biological processes, such as collagen synthesis, cell division, and expansion.
Cosmetic vitamin A derivatives can assist to enhance skin texture, minimise the appearance of wrinkles, and boost rejuvenation of the skin by activating these receptors. It’s crucial to remember that cosmetic vitamin A derivatives can be strong and should only be used according to the recommendations provided by your dermatology professionals. If used improperly, they may cause allergic reactions or inflammation.
HOW MUCH VITAMIN A CAN A PERSON TAKE?
The ideal dosage of this vitamin varies on a number of parameters, including age, sex, general health, and specific dietary requirements. In general, it is advised to abide by the dietary advice offered by recognised health organisations, such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) or the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which make precise recommendations based on demographic studies and scientific research.
These recommendations normally state that people should consume 700 to 900 micrograms of retinol activity equivalents (RAE) of vitamin A daily, with different needs during pregnancy and breastfeeding. However, it is advised to speak with a medical expert or an accredited dietician who can evaluate your individual requirements and offer tailored advice based on your specific circumstance and health objectives.
WHAT ARE THE VARIATIONS OF VITAMIN A?
Note that Vitamin A is also known as:
- Vitamin A Acetate (Retinol) – Powder 250,000 I.U. / g
- Vitamin A Acetate (Retinol) – Powder 325,000 I.U. / g
- Vitamin A Acetate (Retinol) – Powder 500,000 I.U. / g
- Vitamin A Palmitate(Retinol) – Oil 1,000,000 I.U. / g
- Vitamin A Palmitate (Retinol) – Oil 1,700,000 I.U. / g
- Vitamin A Palmitate (Retinol) – Powder 250,000 I.U. / g
- Vitamin A Palmitate (Retinol) – Powder 500,000 I.U. / g
- retinoic acid
Vitamin A is commonly available as:
- Vitamin A capsules
- Vitamin A tablets
- Vitamin A softgels
- Vitamin A drops
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