Why Your Body Needs Vitamin A
Why Your Body Needs Vitamin A
Written by: Brandi Monasco
Your body needs certain vitamins and minerals in order for it to function and work properly. Without these vitamins and minerals, your health could suffer and you can see a lot of symptoms and malfunctions, depending on the vitamin or mineral you are lacking.
Vitamins do multiple things within your body. They can be naturally present in the foods that you eat and can even be environmentally present such as the sunlight.
One of the important vitamins that your body needs is vitamin A. Your body needs vitamin A to help keep your eyes healthy and to help your body fight off infections. Vitamin A is also called retinol and is a major antioxidant that your body needs. Like all antioxidants, it helps to fight inflammation, free radical damage and can even help slow the aging process.
Vitamin A is responsible for building and maintaining strong bones, keeping your skin clear and also helps in supporting your immune system to keep it healthy.
Foods That Are High In Vitamin A:
- Sweet potato
- Dark leafy greens such as collard greens, kale, spinach
- Romaine Lettuce
- Dried Apricots
The recommended daily amount of vitamin A that an adult needs is 0.7 milligrams for men and 0.6 milligrams for women.
Not getting enough of vitamin A in your diet can lead to a vitamin deficiency which can cause some major problems with your health:
- Premature Skin Damage: Vitamin A is essential for maintaining the elasticity and strength of your skin. With a vitamin A deficiency, your skin will lose moisture and can become dry and scaly. Vitamin A also helps with slowing down normal skin aging. With a deficiency, you would also start to see the beginnings of fine lines and wrinkles.
- Poor Eye Health: Vitamin A plays a role in maintaining eye health. It is important for protecting the surface of your eye (or the cornea) and it also helps in maintaining good vision. Having a vitamin A deficiency can put you at risk for not only poor eyesight, but also developing macular degeneration.
- Low Immunity: Vitamin A contains many antioxidants that help support and boost your immune system so that it is working at full speed and can help your body fight against bacteria and viruses. If you have a vitamin A deficiency, you would experience illness ranging from the common cold and flu to even more serious illnesses and diseases.
- Inflammation: The antioxidants found in vitamin A help to reduce the damage in your body that is caused by free radicals. Without vitamin A, your immune system starts to become overactive and creates inflammation. This is normally the cause of food allergies. Also, having lower levels of vitamin A increases your risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
Keep in mind that it is always important and the best to get your vitamin A daily recommended amount from natural sources such as food. It is also important to not overload your body on vitamin A, as having too much can also cause issues.
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Brandi Monasco is a freelance writer, graphic designer and social media manager from Texas. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts and has recently found a new love for health and nutrition.
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