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Consistent Negative reaction to foods high in vitamin A or beta carotene

jpgio

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Joined
Mar 27, 2018
Messages
77
Whenever I eat foods high in vitamin A I have very bad side effects, vertigo, dizziness. This usually happens when I have eat more than one vitamin a/beta carotene rich food in a day i.e eggs and spinach. I basically only eat spinach for vitamin k. Eating liver causes a more extreme reaction. Does this happen to anyone else?
 

JudiBlueHen

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Jun 26, 2017
Messages
373
There is a gene, BCO1, that is one of the main genes involved in converting beta-carotene to retinoid acid. If you have the minor SNP then you probably have a 1/3 deficiency of this conversion. But that would not explain the liver issue. OTOH spinach is very high in oxalates and that could be an issue for some people.
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2021
Messages
104
Yes, it has happened to me as well when I get too much. I've read that you can't get toxic effects from too much beta carotene but that hasn't been my experience. I will get headaches as well. Beta carotene gets absorbed faster so you can get extreme effects quickly but it also leaves your body faster than retinol. But usually retinol excess leads to intolerance of beta carotene for me. Once I calm it down, I can tolerate more beta carotene. And excess retinol can take a long time to leave as it is stored as compared to beta carotene which isn't stored (at least that's my understanding of it). When I had these reactions it took me at least 6 months before I could tolerate ANY vitamin A. I remember one time I thought I was going to pass out literally from eating a few bites of cantaloupe. I felt super dizzy. It was so crazy until I figured it out. But once you take a break, you can get back to normal. And FYI it was grass-fed liver that did it to me. It has super high amounts of Vit A as compared to grain fed so you can get toxic on it pretty quickly.
 

JamesGatz

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The devil is in the dosage imo, I remember before peating I took these mutli-vitamins with a lot of A and then I would eat carrots later in the day I would feel horrendous - would get massive headaches/nausea and felt like I was going to pass out and had to sit down, my metabolic state was not in good shape at the time.

I think I reached a similar issue to you - I wanted to use spinach for vitamin K as well but saw that it is high in A - mixed in with my vit A low fat milk and carrot salad I don't think I would be able to tolerate it either.

The higher your metabolism the more vitamin A you are able to handle, but I believe Vit A at doses that are too high is very toxic, It's a lot harder for the body to get of A versus C for example if I'm remembering correctly so deadly dosages are definitely there imo
 

jpgio

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Thread starter
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Mar 27, 2018
Messages
77
Yes, it has happened to me as well when I get too much. I've read that you can't get toxic effects from too much beta carotene but that hasn't been my experience. I will get headaches as well. Beta carotene gets absorbed faster so you can get extreme effects quickly but it also leaves your body faster than retinol. But usually retinol excess leads to intolerance of beta carotene for me. Once I calm it down, I can tolerate more beta carotene. And excess retinol can take a long time to leave as it is stored as compared to beta carotene which isn't stored (at least that's my understanding of it). When I had these reactions it took me at least 6 months before I could tolerate ANY vitamin A. I remember one time I thought I was going to pass out literally from eating a few bites of cantaloupe. I felt super dizzy. It was so crazy until I figured it out. But once you take a break, you can get back to normal. And FYI it was grass-fed liver that did it to me. It has super high amounts of Vit A as compared to grain fed so you can get toxic on it pretty quickly.
Yeah that is the feeling I get very dizzy, feeling slightly faint
Yes, it has happened to me as well when I get too much. I've read that you can't get toxic effects from too much beta carotene but that hasn't been my experience. I will get headaches as well. Beta carotene gets absorbed faster so you can get extreme effects quickly but it also leaves your body faster than retinol. But usually retinol excess leads to intolerance of beta carotene for me. Once I calm it down, I can tolerate more beta carotene. And excess retinol can take a long time to leave as it is stored as compared to beta carotene which isn't stored (at least that's my understanding of it). When I had these reactions it took me at least 6 months before I could tolerate ANY vitamin A. I remember one time I thought I was going to pass out literally from eating a few bites of cantaloupe. I felt super dizzy. It was so crazy until I figured it out. But once you take a break, you can get back to normal. And FYI it was grass-fed liver that did it to me. It has super high amounts of Vit A as compared to grain fed so you can get toxic on it pretty quickly.
yes that is very similar to what happens to me
 

Ippodrom47

Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
Yes, it has happened to me as well when I get too much. I've read that you can't get toxic effects from too much beta carotene but that hasn't been my experience. I will get headaches as well. Beta carotene gets absorbed faster so you can get extreme effects quickly but it also leaves your body faster than retinol. But usually retinol excess leads to intolerance of beta carotene for me. Once I calm it down, I can tolerate more beta carotene. And excess retinol can take a long time to leave as it is stored as compared to beta carotene which isn't stored (at least that's my understanding of it). When I had these reactions it took me at least 6 months before I could tolerate ANY vitamin A. I remember one time I thought I was going to pass out literally from eating a few bites of cantaloupe. I felt super dizzy. It was so crazy until I figured it out. But once you take a break, you can get back to normal. And FYI it was grass-fed liver that did it to me. It has super high amounts of Vit A as compared to grain fed so you can get toxic on it pretty quickly.
Hi! Do you know when and why exactly did you start to be too sensitive to vit A/b-carotene? Are you better now? What were you eating on your low-vit A diet? Are eggs okay? Also, did you have thyroid/metabolic symptoms when eating high-carotene, such as cold sensitivity, fatigue, dry skin, slow digestion? I'm in the same boat right now, very sensitive to both A and carotene, I was eating a lot of liver a few years ago and then was training like mad, which resulted in the overtraining syndrome.
Thanks!
 

Ippodrom47

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Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
Whenever I eat foods high in vitamin A I have very bad side effects, vertigo, dizziness. This usually happens when I have eat more than one vitamin a/beta carotene rich food in a day i.e eggs and spinach. I basically only eat spinach for vitamin k. Eating liver causes a more extreme reaction. Does this happen to anyone else?
Hi! Are you better now? Plz see my reply to LauriePartridge above as I have the same issue and it's pretty debilitating at times.
 

Ippodrom47

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Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
Liver unfortunately does this to me. Severe fatigue and dizziness. Weakness and poor strength. I suspect Vit A because Pure Vitamin A can also do this to me.
Hi! How long does it take for the symptoms to appear? Mine would start anywhere within several hours, especially if I eat several portions a day. For instance, I used to eat a bit of chicken liver for breakfast, and then for lunch, and in the evening I was extremely fatigued, almost dizzy, barely shuffling my legs. Maybe the effects were more noticeable after eating liver for several days in a row. I used to eat a lot of chicken liver prior to that. Maybe it has finally caught up with me. Do you experience severe brain fog as well? However, I would be pretty much okay next morning. Also, do you tolerate high beta-carotene foods or red meat in smaller amounts? Thanks!
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2021
Messages
104
Hi! Do you know when and why exactly did you start to be too sensitive to vit A/b-carotene? Are you better now? What were you eating on your low-vit A diet? Are eggs okay? Also, did you have thyroid/metabolic symptoms when eating high-carotene, such as cold sensitivity, fatigue, dry skin, slow digestion? I'm in the same boat right now, very sensitive to both A and carotene, I was eating a lot of liver a few years ago and then was training like mad, which resulted in the overtraining syndrome.
Thanks!
I became sensitive to b-carotene/A when I overdosed on Vit A through liver. Once I cut back on the huge amounts of Vit A I didn't have a problem anymore. I am fully recovered now. It took about 4-6 months to get back to normal. It was temporary and I no longer experience it but I am very careful not to get too much A. I ate apples, maybe honeydew melon, parsnips, potatoes, and beef/shrimp and white rice when I was going low A. I wouldn't necessarily recommend that diet though - it had too many oxalates for me which caused other problems and I think I went too long without A. I probably would have been fine with just a few months of low A. Also you can eat white carrots which have only trace amounts of beta carotene - hardly any. Even yellow carrots have a significantly less b- carotene than orange carrots.

Ironically, I need vit A to tolerate beta carotene. If I get too much beta carotene, I do feel cold and get slowed digestion and feel my metabolism slowing down. I do eat eggs regularly and have no trouble with the A in them. I think it's a healthy way to get A. I also like A from dairy fat like butter and cream. I find I usually need a little beef liver every day or almost daily but like only 9 grams or so during the winter when I have less vit D. I also don't eat 100 percent grass-fed liver as it has toxic amounts of A in my opinion. I go for pastured or grass-fed, grain finished which has more tolerable amounts of A for me. I keep my A/retinol to about 5000 IUS in the winter time and 10,000 IUS in the summertime approximately. And I try to keep my beta carotene to 1500 IUS or less during the winter. If my A/retinol intake is higher I can tolerate more like up to 5000 IUs or more of b-carotene in the summertime and it doesn't bother me.

I
 

Ippodrom47

Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
I became sensitive to b-carotene/A when I overdosed on Vit A through liver. Once I cut back on the huge amounts of Vit A I didn't have a problem anymore. I am fully recovered now. It took about 4-6 months to get back to normal. It was temporary and I no longer experience it but I am very careful not to get too much A. I ate apples, maybe honeydew melon, parsnips, potatoes, and beef/shrimp and white rice when I was going low A. I wouldn't necessarily recommend that diet though - it had too many oxalates for me which caused other problems and I think I went too long without A. I probably would have been fine with just a few months of low A. Also you can eat white carrots which have only trace amounts of beta carotene - hardly any. Even yellow carrots have a significantly less b- carotene than orange carrots.

Ironically, I need vit A to tolerate beta carotene. If I get too much beta carotene, I do feel cold and get slowed digestion and feel my metabolism slowing down. I do eat eggs regularly and have no trouble with the A in them. I think it's a healthy way to get A. I also like A from dairy fat like butter and cream. I find I usually need a little beef liver every day or almost daily but like only 9 grams or so during the winter when I have less vit D. I also don't eat 100 percent grass-fed liver as it has toxic amounts of A in my opinion. I go for pastured or grass-fed, grain finished which has more tolerable amounts of A for me. I keep my A/retinol to about 5000 IUS in the winter time and 10,000 IUS in the summertime approximately. And I try to keep my beta carotene to 1500 IUS or less during the winter. If my A/retinol intake is higher I can tolerate more like up to 5000 IUs or more of b-carotene in the summertime and it doesn't bother me.

I
Thanks for such a detailed reply! I really really appreciate it!
I also used to eat lots and lots of beef/chicken liver, sometimes every day, and it finally "killed" my metabolism :))
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2021
Messages
104
Thanks for such a detailed reply! I really really appreciate it!
I also used to eat lots and lots of beef/chicken liver, sometimes every day, and it finally "killed" my metabolism :))
well I think it is very possible to fix with the right adjustments. :):
 

aliml

Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2017
Messages
240
Vitamin A increases your Th2 immune system and Th2 dominance also contributes to food allergies.

The following have been associated with Th2 dominance:

-- IgE-related allergies
-- Seasonal allergies
-- Airway constriction
-- Asthma
-- Nasal drip
-- Mucus
-- Eczema (Dermatitis)
-- Hay fever (Allergic rhinitis)
-- GERD
-- Excess histamine
-- Hives (Urticaria)
-- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

 
Joined
Jun 13, 2021
Messages
104
By the way, didn't you have carotenemia (yellow skin) because of beta-carotine?
Not at that time because I really didn't consume that much beta carotene at the time. I'd stop if it started to make me feel sick. I remember asparagus causing problems and I really tried to limit beta carotene at that point. I don't think it was enough to cause color changes.

But before that, a few years ago I did notice a yellow tint to my skin when I ate a lot of greens and squash which I'm sure is from beta-carotene and I wasn't eating any retinol so I couldn't metabolize it well at that time.
 

Ippodrom47

Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
Vitamin A increases your Th2 immune system and Th2 dominance also contributes to food allergies.

The following have been associated with Th2 dominance:

-- IgE-related allergies
-- Seasonal allergies
-- Airway constriction
-- Asthma
-- Nasal drip
-- Mucus
-- Eczema (Dermatitis)
-- Hay fever (Allergic rhinitis)
-- GERD
-- Excess histamine
-- Hives (Urticaria)
-- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

That is super helpful as I have high blood histamine and reflux as well.

Not at that time because I really didn't consume that much beta carotene at the time. I'd stop if it started to make me feel sick. I remember asparagus causing problems and I really tried to limit beta carotene at that point. I don't think it was enough to cause color changes.

But before that, a few years ago I did notice a yellow tint to my skin when I ate a lot of greens and squash which I'm sure is from beta-carotene and I wasn't eating any retinol so I couldn't metabolize it well at that time.
It's almost uncanny how similar our stories are. So far, I've been treated by various docs for gut issues, reflux, sinus issues, low immunity, etc.

However, now I realize it really started as far back as several years ago when I started eating copious amounts of beef/chicken liver, "Nature's most potent superfood" :D
First, my I became intolerant to any liver (severe fatigue/brain fog), then I started to turn orange from carrots and greens (I also ate lots of raw crucifers, which only added fuel to the fire being goitrogenic foods they are). I also overtrained quite a lot lat year.
Now I'm on a low to zero b-carotene diet and eat a few bites of read meat every day to get my b12 to further facilitate the conversion and utilization of carotene and vit A. Can't take b12 supps, too strong for me.
As a matter of fact, this forum has been much more helpful than any doc's advice.
 

Ippodrom47

Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
I became sensitive to b-carotene/A when I overdosed on Vit A through liver. Once I cut back on the huge amounts of Vit A I didn't have a problem anymore. I am fully recovered now. It took about 4-6 months to get back to normal. It was temporary and I no longer experience it but I am very careful not to get too much A. I ate apples, maybe honeydew melon, parsnips, potatoes, and beef/shrimp and white rice when I was going low A. I wouldn't necessarily recommend that diet though - it had too many oxalates for me which caused other problems and I think I went too long without A. I probably would have been fine with just a few months of low A. Also you can eat white carrots which have only trace amounts of beta carotene - hardly any. Even yellow carrots have a significantly less b- carotene than orange carrots.

Ironically, I need vit A to tolerate beta carotene. If I get too much beta carotene, I do feel cold and get slowed digestion and feel my metabolism slowing down. I do eat eggs regularly and have no trouble with the A in them. I think it's a healthy way to get A. I also like A from dairy fat like butter and cream. I find I usually need a little beef liver every day or almost daily but like only 9 grams or so during the winter when I have less vit D. I also don't eat 100 percent grass-fed liver as it has toxic amounts of A in my opinion. I go for pastured or grass-fed, grain finished which has more tolerable amounts of A for me. I keep my A/retinol to about 5000 IUS in the winter time and 10,000 IUS in the summertime approximately. And I try to keep my beta carotene to 1500 IUS or less during the winter. If my A/retinol intake is higher I can tolerate more like up to 5000 IUs or more of b-carotene in the summertime and it doesn't bother me.

I
Hi! Sorry to bother you again, but how much liver and other vitamin A sources were you eating? I'm trying to remember now, and it seems that I was eating 1 kilo of chicken liver per week + an occasional serving of beef liver + eggs + canned cod liver + lots of fruit and veggies high in carotene. An insanely huge amount, yes, but I was really into healthy eating and reeealyy stupid :)
 
Joined
Jun 13, 2021
Messages
104
Oh no worries. I wasn't eating that much but I think I'd eat like a few ounces daily or maybe a little more of 100 percent grass-fed beef liver. If you look at cronometer.com under New Zealand grass-fed beef liver it shows 59,539 IUs of vit A for 3 ounces/85 grams, so even an ounce/28 grams or two of that daily for a month or so sent me into toxicity before I even realized what was happening. I was also drinking grass-fed dairy (most of it was fortified with A too or was whole milk) and a little bit of eggs and squash and melon maybe some beef, cod, shrimp. Not too much beta carotene I think but anytime I would have some, like an 1/8 slice of cantaloupe or 1/2 cup of asparagus it would send my head spinning with crazy nausea and headaches. Pounding headaches, skin peeling, and my hair fell out and also insane neuropathy which I now believe was a thiamine deficiency from too much A. It was the retinol that did me in. I just had no idea I was getting that much A. I went hyper really fast like I remember having crazy anxiety and shoveling snow in the dead of winter in a t-shirt and feeling really overheated and waking up with a very fast heart rate. I learned after a couple of repeat episodes of this, that vitamin E calmed down the excess A very well and would control the symptoms and stop the headaches and neuropathy. It's my go to fix when I have to detox from too much A. Works brilliantly. Thank heavens for Tocovit.

You just learn by trial and error how things affect your body and what works and what doesn't.
 

Ippodrom47

Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2021
Messages
56
Oh no worries. I wasn't eating that much but I think I'd eat like a few ounces daily or maybe a little more of 100 percent grass-fed beef liver. If you look at cronometer.com under New Zealand grass-fed beef liver it shows 59,539 IUs of vit A for 3 ounces/85 grams, so even an ounce/28 grams or two of that daily for a month or so sent me into toxicity before I even realized what was happening. I was also drinking grass-fed dairy (most of it was fortified with A too or was whole milk) and a little bit of eggs and squash and melon maybe some beef, cod, shrimp. Not too much beta carotene I think but anytime I would have some, like an 1/8 slice of cantaloupe or 1/2 cup of asparagus it would send my head spinning with crazy nausea and headaches. Pounding headaches, skin peeling, and my hair fell out and also insane neuropathy which I now believe was a thiamine deficiency from too much A. It was the retinol that did me in. I just had no idea I was getting that much A. I went hyper really fast like I remember having crazy anxiety and shoveling snow in the dead of winter in a t-shirt and feeling really overheated and waking up with a very fast heart rate. I learned after a couple of repeat episodes of this, that vitamin E calmed down the excess A very well and would control the symptoms and stop the headaches and neuropathy. It's my go to fix when I have to detox from too much A. Works brilliantly. Thank heavens for Tocovit.

You just learn by trial and error how things affect your body and what works and what doesn't.
Thanks again, you're awesome!
 
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