Ever wondered why our parents insisted on us eating carrots for better eyesight? The answer lies in one essential nutrient: Vitamin A, a fat-soluble compound known for its wide array of health benefits, particularly its key role in maintaining good eye health. Vitamin A is an essential nutrient that plays a vital role in maintaining healthy vision, normal organ function, immune system support, and fetal development.*
In this article, we will focus on the benefits of vitamin A to our vision and share tips on how to boost daily vitamin A intake when we're not getting enough from our diet.
Role of Vitamin A in Vision: Insights from Studies
Numerous studies have shown the effects of Vitamin A intake on vision-related health outcomes. One study found that higher concentrations of Vitamin A were associated with better light responses in healthy adults – meaning they had improved vision when exposed to bright light.*
Experts also associated higher levels of Vitamin A with a reduced risk of age-related macular degeneration, an eye condition that can lead to vision loss.*
Another study showed that adequate intake of Vitamin A was associated with better visual pigments in the eyes, which can help improve color vision and night vision.* Additionally, getting enough vitamin A during childhood can prevent blindness.*
Best Food Sources of Vitamin A
Vitamin A comes in two forms: Dietary Vitamin A (carotenoids) and preformed Vitamin A (retinol).
Retinol is found in animal products like eggs, liver, and dairy. Carotenoids are the form of Vitamin A found in plant foods such as cantaloupe, carrots, sweet potatoes, kale, spinach, and other green and yellow vegetables. These forms are essential for cell growth and health as they are converted into retinoic acid, which binds to receptors on cells to influence gene expression.
Eating various fruits, vegetables, and animal products can help ensure that you get enough of this nutrient in your diet for better eye health and immune function.
Signs of Vitamin A Deficiency: What to Look Out For?
While vitamin A is present in both animal and plant foods, certain groups of people are at an elevated risk for Vitamin A deficiency. These groups include pregnant women, breastfeeding mothers, those with a high alcohol intake, and individuals with health conditions that may affect nutrient absorption, such as celiac disease or Crohn's disease. Strict vegetarians or vegans may also be at a higher risk for Vitamin A deficiency, especially if they are not consuming enough vitamin A-rich foods, particularly leafy greens, which are rich sources of carotenoids.*
Signs of Vitamin A deficiency can be quite subtle in the beginning but can become more pronounced over time, including blindness, dry eye syndrome, and increased susceptibility to infectious diseases due to compromised mucous membranes.
Night blindness is one of the first signs of Vitamin A deficiency, a condition where the rod cells in the eyes, which help us see in low light conditions, fail to function optimally. It's vital to consult a healthcare professional if these signs are present. A professional can carry out the necessary checks for Vitamin A levels and offer the appropriate treatment.
On the flip side, excessive consumption of vitamin A can also pose risks. *Vitamin A toxicity can occur from consuming large amounts of vitamin A over time. According to the National Library of Medicine, Pregnant women should avoid consuming more than 3,000 mcg (or 230% recommended daily value) of vitamin A on a regular basis due to the potential risk of congenital birth defects.*
This is why Prenatal supplements, such as Root’d Prenatal MULTI, contain the safe amount of 1,300 mcg (100% Daily value) of vitamin A, from multiple sources.*
Daily vitamin intake should stay within the recommended range, as an overdose can lead to nausea, dizziness, and even hair loss. Long-term consumption of vitamin A more than the Recommended Dietary Allowance can lead to more serious conditions such as ocular inflammation, blurred vision, and damage to the optic nerve.*
How to Avoid Vitamin A Deficiency?
While the risk of being deficient is more common, especially in developing countries*, a well-balanced diet and responsible use of dietary supplements can prevent both deficiency and toxicity risks.
The recommended daily intake varies with age, sex, and life stage, with adults typically requiring between 700 to 900 micrograms per day, and 1,300 micrograms per day for pregnant women.* To avoid toxicity, the National Academy of Sciences recommends staying below 230% of the daily requirements on a daily basis.* If you do have that late-night carrot binge, it’s likely not something to be too concerned with, however, it’s always best to consult with your doctor before starting any new supplement regimen to ensure safe and adequate intake levels of Vitamin A and other essential vitamins.
Achieve Optimal Vitamin A Intake with Root'd!
Our MULTIs come in a powder form which makes them a convenient and enjoyable way to help you meet the recommended daily intake of vitamin A, especially if you're not getting enough from food sources.* You can blend it in your morning smoothie, mix it in your favorite mocktail recipe, or simply pour your Root’d into a glass of water to upgrade your hydration game!*
Our unique blend of superfoods, enzymes, and probiotics enhances the absorption and utilization of nutrients, ensuring that you get the maximum benefit from each serving.* We understand that too much of a good thing can be harmful so we've tailored each Root'd MULTI pack to his, hers, and momma's nutritional needs.*
Boost your intake of Vitamin A and try Root’d risk-free @rootd.com! Save 15% on your first order with code EYEVITAMIN. Always free shipping and protected with our money-back guarantee - 100% refund if you don’t feel a noticeable difference from Root’d (we’re that confident). Try it today!