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Monday, 16 December 2013

Vitamin A and Vision Health

Vitamin A also known as Vitamin A Retinol,  is a yellow, fat-soluble substance, and essential for growth and life and producing pigments in the eye’s retina for scotopic vision (low-light vision). The vital vitamin come from 2 types of foods
1. Retinol, one of the animal forms of vitamin A, is a yellow, fat-soluble substance, a diterpenoid and an alcohol converted to vitamin A and and the retinyl ester derivative of the alcohol stored mostly in liver, when eating animal food sources, such as liver and egg yolk. When converted to retinoic acid, vitamin A is essential for skin health, teeth remineralization, bone growth.and the process of cell differentiation, hence, the growth and development of embryos Retinoic acid via the retinoic acid receptor.
2. Carotenes, including alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, gamma-carotene, and
xanthophyl beta- cryptoxanthin, possess the enzyme required to convert these compounds to retinal. Carotenes are the group of orange pigments phytochemical belonging to the class of
Carotenoids (tetraterpenoids), found abundantly in carrots, pumpkins, maize,
tangerine, orange, in dark, leafy greens and red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables, etc.
and contained many health benefits(1)
I. Health Benefits of vitamin A
A. Vitamin A
 Vitamin A and Vision Health
Vitamin A is a general term of Vitamin A Retinol, retinal, beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, gamma-carotene, and beta-cryptoxanthin best known for its function for vision health and antioxidant scavenger and essential for growth and differentiation of a number of cells and tissues.
According to the study of “The intake of carotenoids in an older Australian population: The Blue Mountains Eye Study” by Manzi F, Flood V, Webb K, Mitchell P., researchers found that Vitamin A intake in this population is high relative to the Australian Recommended Dietary Intake. Carotenoid intakes, particularly beta-carotene, make a substantial contribution, particularly from fruit and vegetables. This study provides important information as a basis for examining associations between dietary carotenoid intake and eye disease in the BMES.(c)
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Sources
(1) http://medicaladvisorjournals.blogspot.ca/2012/02/phytochemicals-in-foods-11-health_22.html
(c) http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12020387