I received a lot of great comments concerning Vitamin A. I didn’t realize there would be so much interest and I didn’t spend very much time writing my post ‘Vitamin A Therapy’. Had I realized this I would have been more diligent in my writing. James mentioned that the Weston Price Foundation has some great information on Vitamin A. I will include the link here as I found it to be an excellent article with GREAT information. If you’re interested in more information about this vital micronutrient I highly recommend reading this article:
Vitamin A from animal sources is in a direct form of Vitamin A – retinol, while Vitamin A in fruits and veggies is in the form of beta-carotene (must be converted to Vitamin A). Retinol is the source that can be toxic at very high levels (varies by the individual), but I will not advise as to the levels of toxicity as I am not a medical doctor and there is controversy concerning toxicity of Vitamin A. Please read the above link for a review. Beta-carotene must be converted to Vitamin A in the body, and as Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin it must be in the presence of bile-acids to successfully make the conversion in the intestines. As a result, beta-carotene sources should be eaten with fats. Butter and whole milk are a source of Vitamin A and are a good addition to fruits and veggies to provide the necessary fats and retinol. James also mentions red palm oil as a good Vitamin A (and Vit. E) source.
After reading the Weston Price information on Vitamin A I am thinking of adding liver to my diet. I have liver from animals we have hunted and from free range Wyoming cattle, as we keep this for our dogs. So these are healthy liver sources. I have never liked the texture, but am willing to experiment with it for health purposes. I do eat a lot of eggs and butter, but do not drink whole milk. After reading the Weston-Price info I have concluded that eating carrots alone as my Vitamin A source will most likely not improve my night vision dramatically. Documented cures of night blindness and blindness due to Vitamin A deficiency occur when the patient was treated with animal sources of Vitamin A; such as liver, and the eyes from trout in one specific case (retinas contain very high levels of retinol). My dog will eat fish heads, but I’m not sure if I have the stomach for this! I think I will stick to venturing out and eating animal liver first and trying the red palm oil to supplement my diet. I will post an update if I find any palatable methods for eating liver. If anyone has some suggestions I would love to hear your recommendations for preparing liver of any kind.