Beta-carotene gives yellow and orange fruit and vegetables their color. It’s turned into vitamin A in the body, so it can perform the same jobs in the body as vitamin A.

Good sources of beta-carotene

The main sources of beta-carotene are:

  • yellow and green (leafy) vegetables – such as spinach, carrots, and red peppers
  • the yellow fruit – such as mango, papaya, and apricots
  • lettuce, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, broccoli, cantaloupe, and winter squash.

How much beta-carotene do I need?

You should be able to get the amount of beta-carotene you need from your daily diet.

What happens if I take too much beta-carotene?

There’s no evidence the beta-carotene we get from food is harmful.

But beta-carotene supplements have been found to increase the risk of lung cancer in people who smoke or have been heavily exposed to asbestos at work.

Important  Tips

You should be able to get the amount of beta-carotene you need by eating a varied and balanced diet.

If you decide to take beta-carotene supplements, it’s important not to take too much as this could be harmful.

Do not take more than 7mg of beta-carotene supplements a day unless advised to by a doctor.

People who smoke or who have been exposed to asbestos are advised not to take any beta-carotene supplements.

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