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Keywords: vitamin A, cancer, cardiovascular disease, cataracts, macular degeneration

Beta Carotene

Beta-carotene belongs to large group of compounds known as carotenoids that have been widely studied for their protective effects against cancer and heart disease. Beta-carotene is thought to be an antioxidant, but its primary role in nutrition is as a source of vitamin A — the body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A as needed.

Many studies have shown that beta-carotene supplementation can prevent or inhibit various cancers — such as cancers of lung, skin, colon, stomach, and liver. But recent studies have also shown that nicotine and heavy alcohol usage can reverse this effect. A similar phenomenon has been seen in heart disease — beta-carotene is protective except in smokers and drinkers, where it becomes a liability.

On the other hand, beta-carotene supplementation (at 50 mg on alternate days) has been shown to reduce the risk of cataracts among smokers by about 25%. Among non-smokers, beta-carotene showed no cataract inhibition, but appeared to reduce the risk of advanced Age-related Macular Degeneration by about 25%. Beta-carotene is also used routinely to treat certain photosensitivity diseases.

Generally speaking, the effectiveness of beta-carotene is enhanced when it is combined with other carotenoids, such as lycopene and lutein.

The bioavailability of oral beta-carotene supplements is very low but can be increased about 60% by adding a piperine supplement (such as Bioperine®) at 5 mg/day. Animal experiments suggest that a zinc supplement might act similarly.

SOFTGELS
CAT No. PER SOFTGEL PER BOTTLE PER DAY Our Price This Order
SN0403 25000 i.u. 100 softgels 1 softgel $11.68
(7% off!)
 BOTTLE(S)

— RM

Last modified 2010.08.30

LifeLink’s Beta Carotene is a product of Source Naturals.