Beta-Carotene Fortification for Better Eye Health

January 20, 2011

The December 2010 issue of the Journal of Nutrition published a consensus paper on the need for beta-carotene fortification.  The consensus established that for most of the general population, the intake of vitamin A is below the RDA; in the US, the average consumption from dietary sources is between 1-2 mg/d (30-60 IU; RDA for men is 3000 IU, for women is 2333 IU).  Young people and pregnant and lactating women are also at risk for suboptimal consumption.  To fill the gap, intake of beta-carotene, a pro-vitamin A source, can be useful.

The intake of beta-carotene from dietary sources is recommended to be 2-4 mg/d, but this is also not reached for most of the population. The consensus suggested that this level should be increased to 7 mg/d.  The scientists also noted that no difference has been found between naturally-occurring and chemically synthesized beta-carotene.

The conference, which was organized by the Institute of Biological Chemistry and Nutrition and took place at the University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, was sponsored by DSM Nutritional products.

The free full text article can be accessed here.

Risa Schulman, PhD
Expert, Healthy Food and Dietary Supplement Science, Marketing and Regulatory




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