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Vitamin A is fat-soluble, stored in body fat. Although not necessary to intake every day, Vitamin A is vital to the body. 90% of it is stored in liver. Vitamin A is found in two forms - Retinol (preformed Vitamin A) or Retinoids (beta-carotene).
Vitamin A can be found in two principal forms in foods:
|Good Sources of Vitamin A|
|Food||Serving Size||RAE(Retinol Activity Equivalent)||%RDA men||% RDA women|
|liver turkey||100 g (3.5 oz)||8058|
|liver beef, pork, fish||100 g (3.5 oz)||6500|
|liver chicken||100 g (3.5 oz)||3296|
|cod liver oil||2tsp / 2 Softgels||3000|
|Sweet Potato||1/2 C||1400||155||200|
|Kale, boiled||1/2 C||240||26.6||34.2|
|Turnip Greens||1/2 C||200||22.2||28.5|
|Spinach, raw||1 C||185||20.5||26.4|
|Red Bell Pepper||1/2 medium||140||15.5||20|
|Milk, Fat Free||1 C||150||16.6||21.4|
|Milk, whole||1 C||75||8.3||10.7|
|Tomato, raw||1 medium||35||3.8||5|
|Green Bell Pepper||1/2 C||15||1.6||2.1|
Vitamin A, a fat-soluble vitamin, plays essential roles in vision, growth, and development; the development and maintenance of healthy skin, hair, and mucous membranes; immune functions; and reproduction.
According to recent surveys by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the average intake of vitamin A (and carotene) by an American adult is adequate. Eating a variety of foods that contain vitamin A (and carotene) is the best way to get an adequate amount. Healthy individuals who eat a balanced diet rarely need supplements. In fact, too much vitamin A can be toxic. Select foods that contain excellent to good sources of vitamin A each day.
A tablespoon (13.6 g) of cod liver oil contains 136% of the UL for preformed vitamin A (retinol). Vitamin A accumulates in the liver, and can reach harmful levels sufficient to cause hypervitaminosis A. Pregnant women may want to consider consulting a doctor when taking cod liver oil because of the high amount of retinol.
Fatty acid oxidation and environmental toxins content are reduced when purification processes are applied to produce refined fish oil products.
The RDA for males is 5000 IU (1.5mg), females 4000 IU. Vitamin A in excess of 50,000 IU can be toxic, causing damage in the body. Stick to the RDA and you'll better off than if you take to much or too little.
Vitamin A since its discovery in 1816 continues to be studied for its properties in accordance with human health. So research continues today with its effects on many prenatal as well as elderly diseases and life complications due to cellular health, diet, and environmental conditions.