People that are getting all their healthy doses of vegetables and foods that contain extra amounts of beta-carotene could be in for a surprise. If you typically eat foods that have lots of beta-carotene in them to be healthier, boost your immune system or change your eating habits, watch out.
Today the Science Daily released information on a study to be published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry on May 4th, 2012. The findings say that, “certain molecules that derive from beta-carotene have an opposite effect in the body & actually block some actions of vitamin A.”
Now realize that this study is looking closely at excessive amounts of beta-carotene but this study could prove troublesome for people who have these foods as their main diet. A typical source of Vitamin-A has high amounts of beta-carotene and with that comes anti-vitamin A molecules. This could really make it a catch 22 on trying to be healthy with this kind of diet.
Let’s be clear and point out that scientists aren’t currently recommending against eating foods high in beta-carotene but are continuing their studies on this phenomenon. The scientists involved in this study said this about their findings, “We determined that these compounds are in foods, they’re present under normal circumstances, and they’re pretty routinely found in blood in humans, and therefore they may represent a dark side of beta-carotene,” said Earl Harrison, Dean’s Distinguished Professor of Human Nutrition at Ohio State and lead author of the study. “These materials definitely have anti-vitamin-A properties, and they could basically disrupt or at least affect the whole body metabolism and action of vitamin A. But we have to study them further to know for sure.”
A website called the Daily Green lists the top 10 food sources of Beta Carotene. They are in order: Carrots, Pumpkins, Sweet Potatoes, Spinach, Green Collards, Kale, Turnip Greens, Beet Greens, Winter Squash and Cabbage. These foods are not being recommended for you to consume less from this study!