What Is Hypervitaminosis A?
Hypervitaminosis A is having too much vitamin A in the body. The condition may be acute or chronic.
Acute toxicity occurs after taking large amounts of vitamin A in a short span of time. Chronic toxicity occurs when excess of vitamin gets accumulated in your body over long period.
Excess Vitamin A is stored in the human liver. Most people develop Vitamin A toxicity when they take high-dose dietary supplements, as a result of megavitamin therapy and high doses of Vitamin A (Retinol) for acne treatments.
Acute Vitamin A toxicity in children is usually the result of accidental ingestion. How much Vitamin A do you need?
According to the recommended dietary allowances (RDA NIN) for vitamin A are:
|1-3 years & 4-6years||400||2800/3200|
|Boys 10-17 years||600||4800|
|Girls 10-17 years||600||4800|
SOURCES OF VITAMIN A
- Dark fruits
- Leafy, green vegetables
- Orange and yellow vegetables (sweet potatoes, carrots)
- Tomato products
- Some vegetable oils
- Fortified foods (which have added vitamins) like cereal
- Fish and fish oils
- Symptoms differ based on whether toxicity is acute or chronic. Headaches and rash are common in both forms of the illness.
- Symptoms of acute Vitamin A toxicity include:
- Abdominal Pain
Symptoms of chronic Vitamin A toxicity include:
- Blurry vision
- Swelling of the bones
- Poor appetite
- Nausea / Vomiting
- Sensitivity to Sunlight
- Itchy skin
- Cracked fingernails
- Hair Loss
- Respiratory Infection
- Liver damage
- Kidney damage due to excess calcium
- In expecting or about to become pregnant woman, too much Vitamin A may result in defects in the foetus. The correct amount of Vitamin A is vital for the development of a fetus. However, excess Vitamin A consumption during pregnancy is known to cause birth defects that may affect a babys eyes, skull, lungs, and heart.
The most effective way to treat this condition is to stop taking high-dose Vitamin A supplements. Most people make a full recovery within a few weeks.