Beta-carotene is the pigment that imparts orange color to carrots. It belongs to a family of chemicals called the carotenoids. It is present in many fruits, vegetables and animal products, such as egg yolks. It has been found that Beta-carotene and in fact all the members of the carotenoid family are stimulators of vitamin A.
These pigments are transformed into the vitamin A after entering the body. But the metabolism of beta-carotene is much dissimilar than that of retinol. The body can convert beta-carotene into the desired amount of vitamin A, as it needs. So, it is not advisable to consume toxic levels of beta-carotene. But it is for sure that consuming high levels of it can really change your skin into an orange color.
This pro-vitamin A is helpful to lower risk of cataracts, heart ailments and cancers including rectal cancer, melanoma, and bladder cancer. It is a powerful body immunity booster and a potent antioxidant too. It also fights the ill effects of cell damaging molecules known as free radicals.
This all proves that beta-carotene has a real vital role to play in human fitness. There are several researches on beta-carotene usefulness for heart disease and cancer. But still researchers are going on to explore its efficiency for treating ailments like Alzheimer’s disease, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, male infertility, and psoriasis.
Researches say that low levels of beta-carotene and other antioxidants are responsible for the development of cataracts, which leads to blurring of the eye lenses that weaken vision.
Vitamin A converted from beta-carotene is helpful in reducing acne symptoms. It strengthens the protective tissue of the skin and minimizes sebum formation. Carrots, squash, sweet potato, spinach, kale, collard greens, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts are all rich in beta carotenes and should be included in the diet to remain fit.