Vitamin A was discovered as one of the first. The researchers isolated it from shark liver in 1934. Since then, a lot of the Vitamin’s pro-health properties have been confirmed in clinical trials.
The biologically active forms of vitamin A are retinol, retinal and retinoic acid. Their natural source are animal products, such as dairy products, liver or fish. It is also worth to mention the carotenoids, which are the most important precursors to vitamin A. They are found in plant foods such as carrots, red peppers, cherries, and spinach. The most well-known carotenoid is beta-carotene. In the system, carotenoids are transformed into retinal, from which bioactive retinol is formed.
Vitamin A belongs to fat-soluble compounds. It is extremely important for the proper functioning of the whole organism. As a component of rhodopsin (pigment in the retina), it plays a key role in the process of seeing. It is also responsible for the growth of epithelial and bone tissue and the development of reproductive cells. It also supports healthy skin, because it is involved in the production of collagen fibers and the regulation of epidermal exfoliation. In addition, it has been proved to have anti-inflammatory and antiradical activity.