Vitamin A, also known as, retinol, is a nutrient that is vitally important for the human body. It plays a necessary role in bolstering the body’s immune system in order to help it resist infections and keep the skin and eyes in optimal condition. Like some other necessary vitamins, retinol is also closely associated with lowering cancer development risks.
What Exactly is Vitamin A?
Retinol is a type of fat-soluble vitamin, meaning that it has the ability to dissolve fats and oil. It is absorbed alongside fats in the diet and is stored inside the body’s fatty tissue. Its primary role is ensuring that your eyes, skin, and bones are in good health. Vitamin A deficiencies are the most common cause of childhood blindness. In adults, a vitamin A deficiency can cause night blindness, blurry vision, or irritable dry eyes.
A vitamin A deficiency doesn’t just cause damage to your eyes, it can also cause major harm to your skin. It can cause your eye lids to become inflamed or the keratinization of the skin to take place. It can also cause your hair to turn dull and lusterless or develop dandruff, and your nails to turn brittle and crack easily. Consuming the proper amount of vitamin A can also prevent the development of certain sexual disorders and prevent cancer from developing in body tissues. It can also prevent sleep disorders such as insomnia, fatigue, and depression from developing.
Although vitamin A deficiencies can cause a lot of harm to your body, meeting your daily requirement of vitamin A can also provide your body with quite a few health benefits.
Consuming vitamin A is a great way to improve your vision. It’s one of the reasons carrots are believed to be great for improving eyesight. Vitamin A helps your eyes better adjust to changes in light; it’s one of the ways it helps to improve your night vision. Retinol also significantly reduces the chances of developing cataracts and reduces the rate of macular degeneration, especially the type that is caused by aging.
Prevents Urinary Stones
Retinol is great for preventing calcium phosphate from building up in the urethra and bladder in the form of urinary stones. It also helps the urinary tract to maintain its shape which further reduces the chances of developing urinary stones.
Improves Bone Health
Vitamin A plays a crucial role in developing strong bones and teeth. It creates dentin, the layer of hard material that forms below the surface of the teeth, which strengthens them and increases their durability.
Lowers the Risk of Acne
Vitamin A helps to reduce the development of acne by cutting down on excess sebum production. Sebum is the oily compound that appears on the surface of your skin. Too much sebum can clog your pores and cause acne. Not only does it reduce the likeliness of developing acne, it helps to flush out toxins from the skin and other organs in the body thanks to its antioxidant properties.
Foods Containing High Amounts of Vitamin A
There are lots of foods that you can consume to get your daily required amount of vitamin A, which is 900 mcg for men and 800 mcg for women. Make sure to include these foods as part of a larger balanced diet. You don’t want to sacrifice other important nutrients in the process of ensuring you’re reaching your vitamin A intake.
- Lamb Liver — 236% DV per serving
1 ounce: 2,122 mcg (236% DV) 100 grams: 7,491 mcg (832% DV)
- Liver Sausage — 166% DV per serving
1 slice: 1,495 mcg (166% DV) 100 grams: 8,384 mcg (923% DV)
- Cod Liver Oil — 150% DV per serving
1 teaspoon: 1,350 mcg (150% DV) 100 grams: 30,000 mcg (3,333% DV)
- King Mackerel — 43% DV per serving
Half a fillet: 388 mcg (43% DV) 100 grams: 252 mcg (28% DV)
- Salmon — 25% DV per serving
Half a fillet: 229 mcg (25% DV) 100 grams: 149 mcg (17% DV)
- Goat Cheese — 13% DV per serving
1 slice: 115 mcg (13% DV) 100 grams: 407 mcg (45% DV)
- Butter — 11% DV per serving
1 tablespoon: 97 mcg (11% DV) 100 grams: 684 mcg (76% DV)