Vitamin A

Vitamin A is essential for your health, supports cell growth, immune function, fetal development and eyesight. Perhaps one of the most well-known functions of vitamin A is its role in vision and eye health. It also helps protect and maintain the cornea - the outermost layer of the eye - and the conjunctiva - a thin membrane that covers the surface of the eye and the inside of the eyelids.

Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that has antioxidant properties, which strengthens the immune system, but also helps reduce free radical damage (or oxidative stress). Vitamin A and other fat-soluble vitamins have the ability to travel through fat and store inside body fat or organs, including the liver. Unlike water-soluble vitamins, they can also penetrate cells. Vitamin A can take one of three forms in the human body: retinol, retinal and retinoic acid. The two primary forms of vitamin A obtained from foods are beta-carotene (found in some plant foods, especially in those that are orange, red or yellow) and active vitamin A, also called retinol (found in some animal foods such as eggs and offal).

In addition, Vitamin A helps maintain superficial tissues such as your skin, intestines, lungs, bladder and inner ear. It supports immune function by supporting the growth and distribution of T-cells, a type of white blood cell that protects your body from infection. Vitamin A supports healthy skin cells, male and female reproductive systems and fetal development.

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