Can I overload on Vitamin A?

Naturally Savvy
Naturally Savvy

Q: Carrots are a favorite food and I eat about 5 lb each week. Yam and squash are also some favorites. Can I overload on vitamin A? Is it good to also take a supplement of ACE?

A: While it is possible to take too much preformed vitamin A, vegetables contain the precursor to vitamin A (provitamin A), beta-carotene. Beta-carotene converts to vitamin A in the liver and upper intestine; therefore, it is not dangerous to take too much beta-carotene, especially from food sources.

About 10,000 IU of beta-carotene (that is what you will find in two medium-sized carrots) converts to approximately 3,000 IU of vitamin A. 

The only problem associated with high intake of beta-carotene is a yellow discoloration of the skin (called carotenodermia). It will clear when beta-carotene intake is reduced.

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Randy is the co-founder of NaturallySavvy.com and The Healthy Shopper. She has been working in the natural health industry for over 20 years. She is very passionate about healthy living by choosing natural and organic as much as possible, has a personal love of cooking and sharing healthy recipes and is a fitness enthusiast.