Beta-Carotene is a form of pro-vitamin A, the most nutritionally important form of pro-vitamin A, and the main source of this Vitamin for vegetarians. Beta-Carotene can be converted into vitamin A in the body as needed. It is essential for whole-body wellness as it is involved in numerous fundamental biological functions, such as the synthesis of glycoproteins.
Thanks to its antioxidant properties, it counteracts the onset of free radicals to such an extent that some clinical studies are investigating its potential usefulness in reducing the risk of cancer and other diseases affecting the cardiovascular system.
Vitamin A is also converted into retinol and retinoic acid, which are essential for eyesight and for the growth and differentiation of cells.
In 1957 the scientist Moore proved that Beta-Carotene was the main precursor of Vitamin A, but it took until the end of the twentieth century – thanks to the research of two scientists, Garewal and Diplock – before it was possible to understand how and when this transformation takes place inside the body.
In fact, Beta-Carotene only transforms into Vitamin A in cases of actual deficiencies in the body.