Beta Carotene is a very powerful antioxidant that is beneficial for the heart and circulatory. In the body, it is transformed into Vitamin A for the maintenance of healthy skin, good vision, and a strong immune system.
Vitamin A is essential for normal structure of epithelial cells that protects the body from environmental contamination.
Benefits of Beta Carotene
Beta Carotene is helpful with preventing the hardening/thickening of the artery walls (dissimilated sclerosis). It also helps reduce blood cholesterol.
Beta Carotene may also be helpful in the treatment of AIDS, cataracts, macular degeneration, and leukoplakia. It also may be beneficial in exercise induced asthma, cancer, heart disease, hypertension, Alzheimer’s depression, head aches, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Beta carotene has been said that it may protect against cancer and heart disease. These benefits are said to be due to its ability to boost the immune system and act an a powerful antioxidant within the human body. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals, which are highly reactive chemical substances that can damage internal cell structure and surrounding material. This can lead to aging and premature disease.
A study at Harvard University showed that if you were to consume 50 mg of beta carotene per day, the risk of heart attacks and strokes would be reduced by around 50%.
This nutrient can also be taken to improve ones vision and it may help relieve and improve skin disorders, such as psoriasis and eczema.
Further benefits of beta carotene include protection of the throat, mouth, and lungs from precancerous cell proliferation.
Risks and Precautions from Beta Carotene intake
Risks and precautions include the fact that large doses may cause urine and skin discoloration (an orange appearance). Beta carotene supplements have been linked to higher incidents of lung cancer; therefore, smokers should avoid this supplement or consult their physician. Large amounts of Beta carotene could be toxic to anyone with liver damage. It has also been linked to serious birth defects if consumed in the first trimester of pregnancy.
Other than the above, beta carotene seems to be a very safe nutrient. Beta carotene doesent cause toxic effects unlike vitamin A, which can lead to toxicity if taken in large doses, beta carotene is only converted on demand, and, because of this, does not present the same problem as that of Vitamin A.
There is no RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) set for this nutrient. Experts suggest consuming between 2,500 IU to 10,000 IU each day.
Tips on choosing a supplement for the best benefits of Beta Carotene
1. Purchase your health supplements from pharmaceutical GMP compliance. Supplements have been found to harbor dangerous contaminants in them, and worse yet, many products don’t actually have the amount of ingredients what are stated on the labels. A recent report showed that consumers only have a 1 in 5 chance of obtaining a supplement with the amount of ingratiates that are stated on the product label. Don’t just take our word, you can read an article on the industry wide problem here.
2. Email or phone the company and ask if they have a certificate of analysis on file to confirm that the ingredients are what are said on the labels, and also to confirm the potency of the active ingredients.
3. Beta carotene works together with other antioxidants and carotenoids. For that reason, we suggest one should look to consume the nutrient as part of a comprehensive, scientifically balanced formula.
4. Not all beta carotene is of the same quality. We found out over the years that, most manufacturers use synthetic beta carotene, which is an extremely cheap version and far less effective. Natural Beta Carotene, however, is more expensive, but has been proven in some clinical trials to be far superior. For example, in one particular study, the synthetic version was tested on rats with tumors and had no effect, while the natural version caused the tumors to disappear on the same rats.