Vitamin A is a fat soluble substance that is needed by the human body for many functions. The most important benefits of this vitamin are its ability to support and improve the vision and also its help in the development of immune system. Deficiency of this vitamin causes vision blurring, night blindness, susceptibility to diseases and illness and sometimes permanent blindness. Prolonged vitamin A deficiency can also lead to death in some cases. Vitamin A can be obtained through the foods that people eat. Natural foods are rich with this vitamin and can suffice the needs of the body.
Here is a list of Vitamin A foods:
- Meat and Liver: Vitamin A concentrations in meat foods are high, especially in the liver. The vitamin loss due to cooking is very minimal and cooked meat is a rich source of this vitamin. Amongst vitamin A foods in the non-vegetarian categories, liver is accepted to be the best source. A single serving of liver can give the body more than five times the requirement. Turkey liver, chicken liver and beef liver are the richest sources of this vitamin. Boiled and steamed preparations lose very little vitamin A quantities and are the recommended ways to eat this food. Vitamin A deficiency is a very rare occurrence amongst people with this type of diet.
- Vegetables and plants: Vitamin A foods also include plants and vegetables, especially greens like lettuce and other seasoning herbs. Carrots, sweet potatoes, chilli powder and other types of spices are rich in vitamin A. A well prepared dish with adequate seasoning of spices is adequate to satisfy the needs of the body. Almost all the people use these foods, in one way or the other, as a part of their diet. So, it is highly unlikely for vitamin A deficiency to be widely prevalent. But it is possible with people who have inadequate supply of food, especially in third world countries.
- Fruits: This type of vitamin A foods might not have the high levels of concentration when compared to the other two. But, the quantities available in fruits are enough for daily sustenance. Also, fruits are rich in other type of vitamins and nutrients and offer a wholesome nutritional food option to the people. Butter nut, Cantaloupe and apricots have the largest concentrations of vitamin A.Fruits cannot substitute other types as primary source of vitamin A and people with a diet that is made up of fruits are under a risk of vitamin A deficiency. Supplementing their intake with other foods or products can prevent occurrence of the deficiency.