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Vitamin A is effective for treating a deficiency, but does vitamin A work for other uses as well? Many studies suggest that the vitamin can treat or prevent a variety of problems in people with vitamin A deficiencies (including measles or malaria), but this does not imply that it is beneficial for those without nutritional deficiencies.
Does It Work for a Vitamin A Deficiency?As you might guess, taking vitamin A is effective for treating a deficiency. It is also effective for preventing it in people at high risk for such problems. However, it should be noted that vitamin A deficiency is rare in developed countries; most people get plenty of vitamin A from their diet.
Does Vitamin A Work for Other Uses?Some studies suggest that a high dietary intake of vitamin A may decrease the risk of breast cancer or cataracts. However, this does not necessarily mean that taking supplements also provides such benefits. Many studies suggest that vitamin A can treat or prevent a variety of different problems in people with a deficiency, such as malaria, measles, or pregnancy complications. However, these studies do not imply that vitamin A can treat or prevent such problems in people without nutritional deficiencies.
- Treating anemia
- Preventing death of fetuses or newborns (when taken by pregnant women)
- Reducing the transmission of HIV from mother to baby during pregnancy, birth, or breastfeeding
- Treating pneumonia
- Treating and/or preventing various types of cancer, including colorectal cancer, esophageal cancer, gastric cancer (stomach cancer), lung cancer, ovarian cancer, or head and neck cancer.