When you hear vitamin A (also known as retinol) you probably think of it’s impact on eyesight. While this is one of the things that vitamin A (specifically Beta-Carotene which is converted into vitamin A in the body) is helpful with, it is not the only thing it helps.
Lungs: In early stages of development, vitamin A can be crucial to helping the lungs and alveoli sacs form. In addition to this “During moderate vitamin-A-deficiency, the incidence for diseases of the respiratory tract is considerably increased and repeated respiratory infections can be influenced therapeutically by a moderate vitamin-A-supplementation [Aust. Paediatr. J. 22 (1986) 95; Lancet 338 (1991) 67]”. Vitamin A is great for helping cell growth and repair so it is also beneficial for other lung issues such as COPD and smokers lungs.
It is also great for the kidneys and many other organs due to these healing and repairing properties
Immune system: Vitamin A is great for helping the body produce mucous membranes on the entrances to one’s body which helps trap bacteria and other invasive organisms. Vitamin A plays a part in the production of white blood cells which supports the immune system. In its natural form found in plant materials, it seems to help cells stay healthy and reduce gene mutation and uncontrollable growth. Again, “current evidence suggests that getting adequate vitamin A, especially from plants, is important for healthy cell division and may reduce one’s risk of particular types of cancer.”
Reproductive systems: Vitamin A plays a part in both men and women helping maintain a healthy reproductive system, especially with infants as they are growing in the womb. “In pregnant women, vitamin A is also involved in the growth and development of many major organs and structures of the unborn child, including the skeleton, nervous system, heart, kidneys, eyes, lungs and pancreas.”
Great foods that contain Vitamin A:
green leafy vegetables
broccoli , carrots, squash
Certain fishes and salmons
Cantaloupe, Apricots and mangos
However too much vitamin A like any fat soluble vitamin can be harmful if taken in extreme quantities. Getting Vitamin A from food products is ideal however it is hard to always get the perfect balanced diet.