Vitamin A

Retinol; Retinal; Retinoic acid; Carotenoids

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that is stored in the liver.

There are two types of vitamin A that are found in the diet.

  • Preformed vitamin A is found in animal products such as meat, fish, poultry, and dairy foods.
  • Provitamin A is found in plant-based foods such as fruits and vegetables. The most common type of pro-vitamin A is beta-carotene.

Vitamin A is also available in dietary supplements. It most often comes in the form of retinyl acetate or retinyl palmitate (preformed vitamin A), beta-carotene (provitamin A) or a combination of preformed and provitamin A.

Vitamin A benefit

Vitamin A, also known as retinol, is essential to the formation of visual purple in the retina, which allows vision in dim light. Beta carotene, the precursor to vitamin A found in vegetables, has antioxidant properties, which means it protects cells from the daily toxic damage of oxidation.

Vitamin A source

Like most vitamins, vitamin A may be obtained in the recommended amount with a well-balanced diet, including some enriched or fortified foods.

Function

Food Sources

Side Effects

Recommendations