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This is the Bad Impact of Excess Vitamin A That Should Be Watched

Excess vitamin A in the body can cause mild to severe side effects for health. What are the consequences for the body? Come on, find out more in the explanation below!

Advantages of Vitamin A
Excess vitamin A or in medical terms called hypervitaminosis A is a condition that occurs when the body has too much vitamin A.

This condition can be acute or chronic. Acute overload occurs after taking large amounts of vitamin A over a short period of time, usually hours or days. While chronic excess occurs when a lot of vitamin A builds up in the body over a long period of time.

Hypervitaminosis A can be diagnosed using a blood test to check vitamin A levels. Most people improve simply by reducing their vitamin A intake.

Recommended Daily Intake of Vitamin A
The adequacy rate of vitamin A (per day) recommended by the Indonesian Ministry of Health is as follows:

  • 0 – 5 months: 375 mcg (micrograms).
  • Age 6 months – 3 years 400 mcg.
  • Ages 4-6 years 450 mcg.
  • Ages 7 – 9 years: 500 mcg.
  • Men ages 10 – 80 and over 600 – 700 mcg.
  • Women ages 10 – 80 and over: 600 mcg.
  • Pregnant women trimester 1-3: 300 mcg.
  • Breastfeeding mothers: 350 mcg.

Vitamin A is essential for the immune system, eyes, and overall health. Taking vitamin A—either natural or synthetic (supplements)—may help certain conditions. However, if you consume too much, it can be harmful to health.

Conditions That Cause Excess Vitamin A
The liver stores vitamin A. Over time levels of vitamin A can build up in the liver to unsafe levels, causing chronic hypervitaminosis A.

High vitamin A levels are usually the result of taking too many supplemental vitamins. You should talk to your doctor about all the vitamins you are taking to make sure that you are not taking too many of them.

Occasionally, children develop acute hypervitaminosis A, which often occurs as a result of inadvertent vitamin intake. So, keep multivitamins and vitamin A supplements out of reach of children.

Long-term use of acne medications or creams containing vitamin A can also cause hypervitaminosis A in some people.

Consequences of Excess Vitamin A
Hypervitaminosis A can cause a variety of symptoms that can vary depending on whether the condition is acute or chronic. Both acute and chronic types of hypervitaminosis A can cause headaches and rashes.

An acute excess of vitamin A may cause one or more of the following symptoms:
  • Easy to get angry.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Feelings of pressure on the brain.
  • Nauseous.
  • Stomach ache.
  • Vomit.

Meanwhile, chronic vitamin A deficiency may cause one or more of the following symptoms:
  • Sprue.
  • Cracked nails.
  • Bone swelling.
  • Bone pain.
  • Decreased appetite.
  • The corners of the mouth are cracked.
  • Blurred vision or other vision changes.
  • Sensitive to sunlight.
  • Dizzy.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • The skin looks yellow.
  • Rough, dry, peeling, or itchy skin.
  • Hair loss.
  • Confusion.
  • Respiratory infection.

For children, the effects of excess vitamin A may occur, including:

  • Soft or tender skull bones.
  • Weight is difficult to gain.
  • Double vision.
  • Eyeballs appear more prominent.
  • Soft bulge on baby's head.
  • Coma.

Complications of Excess Vitamin A Hypervitaminosis A has the potential to cause complications, including:

  • Liver damage.
  • Excessive accumulation of calcium in the body.
  • Osteoporosis, a condition in which the bones become brittle, weak, and break easily.
  • Kidney damage due to excess calcium

Taking too much vitamin A during pregnancy can cause birth defects. For that, consult with your doctor about eating the right foods for pregnancy.

How to Overcome Excess Vitamin A If vitamin A poisoning is suspected, the doctor may ask for a history of food intake and perform blood tests to determine the status of serum retinol and retinyl esters circulating in the blood.

Most of the symptoms of vitamin A excess can be treated by stopping taking additional supplements and monitoring overall vitamin A intake from food sources.

Once stopped, symptoms often go away completely within one to four weeks. The length of recovery time is based on how long the vitamin A has been in the body's tissues. This means that symptoms due to acute vitamin overload will have a faster recovery time.

Although most of the symptoms are treatable, birth defects caused by excessive consumption of vitamin A are irreversible.

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