Posted on

What you should know about vitamin A?

Follow
( 0 Followers )
X

Follow

E-mail : *

FACTS:

Vitamin A is fat-soluble. It requires fats as well as minerals to be properly absorbed by your digestive tract.

It can be stored in your body and need not be replenished every day.

It occurs in two forms—preformed vitamin A, called retinol (found only in foods of animal origin), and provitamin A, known as carotene (provided by foods of both plant and animal origin).

Vitamin A is measured in USP Units (United States Pharmacopeia), IU (International Units), and RE (Retinol Equivalents). (See section 168.) 1,000 RE (or 5,000 IU) is the recommended daily dosage for adult males to prevent deficiency. For females it’s 800 RE (4,000 IU). During pregnancy the new RDIs/RDAs do not recommend an increase, but for nursing mothers an additional 500 RE is suggested for the first six months and an additional 400 RE for the second six months.

There is no formal RDI/RDA for beta-carotene, because it is not (yet) officially recognized as an essential nutrient. But anywhere from 10,000–15,000 IUs of beta-carotene are needed to meet the RDI/RDA for vitamin A.

WHAT IT CAN DO FOR YOU:

Counteract night blindness, weak eyesight, and aid in the treatment of many eye disorders. (It permits formation of visual purple in the eye.)

Build resistance to respiratory infections.

Aid in the proper function of the immune system.

Shorten the duration of diseases.

Keep the outer layers of your tissues and organs healthy.

Help in the removal of age spots.

Promote growth, strong bones, healthy skin, hair, teeth, and gums.

Help treat acne, superficial wrinkles, impetigo, boils, carbuncles, and open ulcers when applied externally.

Aid in the treatment of emphysema and hyperthyroidism.

DEFICIENCY DISEASE:

Xerophthalmia, night blindness.

Deficiency often occurs as a result of chronic fat malabsorption. It’s most commonly found in children under five years, usually because of insufficient dietary intake.

BEST NATURAL SOURCE:

Fish liver oil, liver, carrots, dark green and yellow vegetables, eggs, milk and dairy products, margarine, and yellow fruits. (Note: The color intensity of a fruit or vegetable is not necessarily a reliable indicator of its beta-carotene content.)

SUPPLEMENTS:

Usually available in two forms, one derived from natural fish liver oil and the other water dispersible. Water dispersible supplements are either acetate or palmitate and recommended for anyone intolerant to oil, particularly acne sufferers. 5,000 to 10,000 IU are the most common daily doses.

Vitamin A acid (retin A), which has often been used in the treatment of acne, and is now being marketed as a treatment for eradicating superficial wrinkles, is available only by prescription in the United States.

Posted on

The importance of vitamin C supplementation

Follow
( 0 Followers )
X

Follow

E-mail : *

Vitamin supplements are very important in prevention of unwanted health ailments that is partially caused by vitamin deficiencies. Many people today use vitamin supplements to make up for lost nutrients or the shortage of vitamins in their system. A shortage in Vitamin C may lead to scurvy, a condition that may causes tooth loss, hemorrhage, bruising, weakening of inability to fight infection, mild anemia, and bleeding. Essential amounts of vitamin C is necessary to promote overall health and well being. In many instances a good diet might be enough, but when it is not, vitamin supplementation necessary to take care of the deficiency.

Ascorbic Acid or Vitamin C is one of the most popular health supplements that is supposed to boost the immune system. It may strengthen the capillaries or the tiny blood vessels that carry oxygen and other necessary nutrients to all parts of the body via the bloodstream. Vitamin C is also a potent antioxidant, which means that it can eliminate free radicals from the body. It also helps deal with harmful oxygen molecules that could damage the cells. It is also believed that Vitamin C helps maintain cellular health and prevent cancer and a host of other health problems.

In addition to these health benefits, Vitamin C also plays an important role in promoting the health and beauty of the skin. This vitamin inhibits the production of melanin, the pigment that gives the skin its dark color. Vitamin C is also necessary for collagen synthesis, a process that improves skin elasticity and holds back the aging process. Applying skin-care products which contain Vitamin C may improve collagen production and result to a more youthful and hydrated looking skin.

The current recommended daily allowance (RDA) for Vitamin C is 75 milligrams (mg) a day for women and 90 mg a day for men to get the minimum amount the human body needs. However , medical specialists suggest that an intake of 200 mg is accepted since that amount is the most the human body can absorb at one time. Vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits like oranges, grapefruit, and tomatoes. Vegetables like bell pepper and broccoli are also good sources of Vitamin C.

It’s easy to get ample amounts of Vitamin C from one’s diet as long as it contains adequate amounts of fruits and vegetables. But if one feels there is a deficiency that needs to be taken care off, individuals are advised to take Vitamin C supplementation to take care of that deficiency. If a cold is starting to develop, it may also help to increase one’s consumption. Medical studies show that taking 1000 mg of Vitamin C a day may reduce the severity of cold symptoms by about 20 percent.

Individuals who want to Vitamin C supplementation should seek the recommendation of doctors and other health professionals to side effects and drug interaction. Most people may take up to 2000 mg of Vitamin C without ill effects while some can develop diarrhea from as little as 500 milligrams. It is also important to drink plenty of water because Vitamin C needs to be dissolved in order to be metabolized properly. Sufficient water may also ensure that excess Vitamin C is eliminated from the body.

Posted on

The many benefits of Vitamin C as an antioxidant

Follow
( 0 Followers )
X

Follow

E-mail : *

Slice an apple into half, and it turns brown. A copper penny suddenly becomes green, or an iron nail when left outside, will rust. What do all these events have in common? These are examples of a process called oxidation. If the sliced apple is dipped in a lemon juice, however, the rate at which the apple turns brown is slowed. It is because the Vitamin C in the lemon juice slows the rate of oxidative damage.

Since its discovery 65 years ago, vitamin C has come to be known as a “wonder worker.” Because of its role in collagen formation and other life-sustaining functions, Vitamin C serves as a key immune system nutrient and a potent free-radical fighter. This double-duty nutrient has been shown to prevent many illnesses, from everyday ailments such as the common cold to devastating diseases such as cancer.

The water-soluble vitamin C is known in the scientific world as ascorbic acid, a term that actually means “without scurvy.” We depend on ascorbic acid for many aspects of our biochemical functioning; yet human beings are among only a handful of animal species that cannot produce their own supply of vitamin C. Like these other animals, including primates and guinea pigs, we have no choice but to obtain this nutrient through food or our daily diet.

Vitamin C can enhance the body’s resistance from different diseases, including infections and certain types of cancer. It strengthens and protects the immune system by stimulating the activity of antibodies and immune system cells such as phagocytes and neutrophils.

Vitamin C, as an antioxidant, helps reduce the activity of free radicals. Free radicals are by-products of normal metabolism which can damage cells and set the stage for aging, degeneration, and cancer. It shouldn’t come as any surprise that vitamin C is being used for cancer treatment. In large doses, Vitamin C is sometimes administered intravenously as part of cancer treatment.

Vitamin C prevents free radical damage in the lungs and may even help to protect the central nervous system from such damage. Free radicals are molecules with an unpaired electron. In this state, they’re highly reactive and destructive to everything that gets in their way. Although free radicals have been implicated in many diseases, they are actually a part of the body chemistry.

As an antioxidant, vitamin C’s primary role is to neutralize free radicals. Since ascorbic acid is water soluble, it can work both inside and outside the cells to combat free radical damage. Vitamin C is an excellent source of electrons; therefore, it “can donate electrons to free radicals such as hydroxyl and superoxide radicals and quench their reactivity.”

The versatile vitamin C also works along with glutathione peroxidase (a major free radical-fighting enzyme) to revitalize vitamin E, a fat-soluble antioxidant. In addition to its work as a direct scavenger of free radicals in fluids, then, vitamin C also contributes to the antioxidant activity in the lipids.

Optimal health, however, requires a balance between free radical generation and antioxidant protection. One of the functions of Vitamin C is to get and quench these free radicals before they create too much damage.

However, there is research to show that vitamin C may act as a pro-oxidant. In other words, vitamin C, under certain conditions anyway, may act in a manner that is opposite to its intended purpose. This has raised concern among thousands of people who supplement their diets with vitamin C…but that’s another story.