Early Signs of Vitamin A Deficiency
Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant and a fat-soluble vitamin. It is crucial for maintaining healthy vision, skin, bones, and other body tissues. It is also essential for healthy functioning and maintenance of lungs, kidneys, heart, and other important organs. Vitamin A naturally occurs in lots of food sources and can be found in plant-based and animal food products. A deficiency of vitamin a is widespread in developing countries. It is primarily because people in such countries mostly consume grains like rice that is devoid of various vitamins, including vitamin A. Hence, increasing instances of childhood blindness and weak immunity can be observed here. Read on to know how a diet deficient in vitamin A can lead to significant health concerns and how you can prevent its deficiency.
What Are the Symptoms of Vitamin A Deficiency?
Caption: acne on skin, Credit: Pixabay
You can easily identify certain warning signs of this vitamin deficiency by experiencing the following:
Dry and acne-ridden skin
Constant skin infections
Dry and dandruff prone hair
Weakened eye vision
Respiratory tract infections
Slow healing of wounds
1. Dry and Acne Ridden Skin
Vitamin A is critical for the formation and repair of your skin cells. It is also anti-inflammatory. Its deficiency can give rise to many inflammatory skin conditions like eczema, acne, and dry skin.
2. Constant Skin Infections
Wrinkled and scaly skin is an important sign of a vitamin a deficiency. Vitamin A is necessary to maintain the health of the skin’s tissues. Hence, it’s deficiency may lead to frequent skin infections.
3. Dry and Dandruff Prone Hair
Not only hair, but low levels of vitamin A may make your nails brittle and weak too. Low levels of vitamin A can stop the process of skin-cell renewal leading to dry and dandruff-prone hair, brittle nails, and chapped lips.
4. Weakened Eye Vision
Worsening eyesight is one of the most common symptoms of vitamin A deficiency. Night blindness, i.e., inability for the eyes to adjust to low light as well as dry and itchy eyes are the manifestations of inadequate intake of vitamin A. If left untreated, night blindness can result in a permanent loss of vision.
5. Respiratory Tract Infections
Vitamin A deficiency is associated with a weakened immune system and consequently increasing respiratory tract infections. Including sources of vitamin A in your diet will decrease the severity of respiratory infections. Vitamin A is very essential for lung health and preventing diseases like pneumonia.
6. Slow Healing of Wounds
Vitamin A is critical to the collagen generation. Collagen is the central component of healthy skin tissue. Low or inadequate levels of vitamin A delay the healing process of wounds on the skin. The pace of skin healing and skin health can be enhanced with the addition of vitamin A in your diet.
Is There a Vitamin A Deficiency Treatment?
Caption: Healthy food and a pill illustration, Credit: Pixabay
It is not difficult to prevent yourself from falling prey to a host of vitamin a deficiency diseases. You have to include vitamin A sources of food in your diet consciously. Some of the commonly available vitamin A food sources are:
dairy products like fortified milk and cheese
Adding vitamin A supplements is the first step in combatting vitamin A deficiency in people. For severe vitamin A deficiency cases, a supplement containing massive doses of vitamin A (above 900 mcg per day) is prescribed by doctors.
Thus, we see that vitamin A is of immense benefit to the healthy functioning of our bodies. Its deficiency can have adverse health consequences if ignored. At the same time, the signs of insufficient vitamin A levels are easy to notice. The above-mentioned symptoms will help you to equip yourself against discomforting health conditions in the future.