2

votes

Are we in overkill territory with the amounts of vitamin A in our diets ?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 09, 2013 at 11:30 AM

I'm making the assumption that like me, most of you eat a vast amount of vitamin A rich foods. So I'm wondering if anyone else has had this thought about too much Vitamin A in our diets?

I for one eat loads of oily fish, red meat, eggs, butter, carrots, sweet potatoes and spinach - all of which are high in retinol or beta-carotene which converts to Vitamin A. I don't eat liver (still can't stomach it) but can only image that if I did, that would be total overkill. Can't imagine what people are doing if they also have Cod Liver Oil on top of all this! My daily averages are already +500-1000% the RDI. Is there potential for liver toxicity and I have also read that large doses of retinol can increase one's risk of osteoporosis? Or will maintaining sufficient levels of calcium and Vitamin D offset this risk? Or is this all just void because the body doesn't even convert half the retinol/beta-carotene and hence, doesn't absorb as much Vitamin A as you may think you're consuming?

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on January 09, 2013
at 10:19 PM

Correction = soaring through the skies with *ALL nutrients ;-)

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on January 09, 2013
at 10:18 PM

Yeah, good point. I've never been corcerned with RDIs in the past as a balanced paleo diet sets you soaring through the skies with most nutrients. It's just that the Vitamin A toxicity thing was getting to me lately so I just wanted some clarity on it. I think it just gets played up a because a lot of people DON'T have balanced diets and coupled with alcohol problems their risk is far greater. So not really a concern for us folk I spose!

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on January 09, 2013
at 10:15 PM

Thanks DM for this and the article link! Very informative. I'm at ease now knowing my D levels are very good and I'm going to look into K2 as well

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on January 09, 2013
at 10:09 PM

I'm going get my hands on this book - it sounds really interesting. Just trying to be proactive about mitigating the risk of developing bone and teeth problems down the track due to years of malnutrition & family predisposition so K2 sounds like the key here.

7f8bc7ce5c34aae50408d31812c839b0

(2698)

on January 09, 2013
at 07:24 PM

I take a supplement daily from life extensions that has 1000mcg K1, 1000mcg K2-MK4, and 100mcg K2-MK7.

4523f952f67fa6485efeac2c9ea810cf

(166)

on January 09, 2013
at 04:44 PM

How much do you take per day?

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on January 09, 2013
at 03:26 PM

No, but I used to take Green Pasture's butter oil before vitamin K2-MK4 supplements became widely available.

6f4425e3c7dc0efe60da531c5d991487

(373)

on January 09, 2013
at 03:19 PM

Thanks for the link. Have you used Green Pasture's cod liver oil?

3327924660b1e2f8f8fc4ca27fedf2b2

(2919)

on January 09, 2013
at 02:51 PM

You do realize the RDA is based on faulty science AND the RDA doesn't tell you how much nutrition you SHOULD be getting. It just tells you how much you NEED to be getting to avoid straight-out malnutrition and nutrient deficiencies. Just because something is 10000000% above the RDA doesn't make it bad. And humans are not combustion engines. You know how they figure out how many minerals/vitamins/whatever a food has? They use chemical solvents to extract the nutrients or they literally set the food on fire and measure macro composition.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on January 09, 2013
at 02:11 PM

Booom! 3 2 1 0.

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2 Answers

6
E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on January 09, 2013
at 12:06 PM

The plant forms of vitamin A can't cause retinol overdose.

You're not going to get anywhere near overdose from oily fish (2000kcal mackerel: 30% RDA), butter (2000kcal: 130% RDA) or eggs (2000kcal: 154% RDA). But even eating nothing but eggs and getting 150% of the RDA, you're still only getting 7000IU per day, which is significantly less than the TUI for a 25 year old male, which is 10000IU. But the TUI itself is very conservative and chronic toxicity is more likely to require 4000IU/kg over long periods of time. Obviously you're not going to be anywhere near approaching this from a diet of the above foods or, realistically, from cod liver oil.

Eating liver it is at least physically possible to achieve chronic toxicity. But the risk of vitamin A toxicity is significantly reduced if you have adequate vitamin D. You can still safely at liver once a week without problems (and all the butter you like).

E35e3d76547b18096a59c90029e7e107

(15613)

on January 09, 2013
at 03:26 PM

No, but I used to take Green Pasture's butter oil before vitamin K2-MK4 supplements became widely available.

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on January 09, 2013
at 10:15 PM

Thanks DM for this and the article link! Very informative. I'm at ease now knowing my D levels are very good and I'm going to look into K2 as well

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on January 09, 2013
at 02:11 PM

Booom! 3 2 1 0.

6f4425e3c7dc0efe60da531c5d991487

(373)

on January 09, 2013
at 03:19 PM

Thanks for the link. Have you used Green Pasture's cod liver oil?

3
7f8bc7ce5c34aae50408d31812c839b0

(2698)

on January 09, 2013
at 02:20 PM

I agree with David Moss' answer and would add that with the amount of A and D we typically get its very important to get enough K2. After reading the book Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox, I added K2 supplementation.

A and D work together to produce all kinds of K2-activated proteins, some of which, when properly activated by K2, direct calcium into bones and teeth and away from soft tissues like arteries and heart valves.

Think about it. The government tells us to stop eating eggs, butter, and animal fats in the 70s and what happens? People start seeing artheriosclerosis on the rise, which is calcification of arteries. Whats in eggs, butter, and animal fats - K2.

There have been studies where women supplemented massive amounts of D and calcium to prevent bone breakage. For every bone they kept from breaking they caused 3 storkes or heart attacks. Turns out the participants were K2 deficient. Add K2 and everything is great. In some cases the K2 actually removed calcium from arteries and heart valves.

Given theres no know toxicity to K2, I load up on it.

7f8bc7ce5c34aae50408d31812c839b0

(2698)

on January 09, 2013
at 07:24 PM

I take a supplement daily from life extensions that has 1000mcg K1, 1000mcg K2-MK4, and 100mcg K2-MK7.

4523f952f67fa6485efeac2c9ea810cf

(166)

on January 09, 2013
at 04:44 PM

How much do you take per day?

42cd0feeeda5fa2e2fe1c4fd8255073a

(1930)

on January 09, 2013
at 10:09 PM

I'm going get my hands on this book - it sounds really interesting. Just trying to be proactive about mitigating the risk of developing bone and teeth problems down the track due to years of malnutrition & family predisposition so K2 sounds like the key here.

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