Beta Carotene, a fat soluble nutrient, is a precursor to vitamin A, so having a beta carotene deficiency may lead to a vitamin A deficiency. Excessive vitamin A intake may lead to headaches, loss of appetite, nausea, and diarrhea, skin changes and potential birth defects.
Beta-carotene is found in certain foods. It breaks down to become vitamin A in the body.
Your provider may order this test if you have signs that your vitamin A level may be too low, such as:
- Bones or teeth that do not develop correctly
- Dry or inflamed eyes
- Feeling more irritable
- Hair loss
- Loss of appetite
- Recurring infections
- Skin rashes
- Problems seeing at night
The test can also be used to help measure how well your body absorbs fats.