red color should indicate dangerous levels not simply excess

Eating more than the RDA for some nutrients, like beta-carotene, doesn't pose a danger. It's misleading to see red for Vitamin A in the diary when I ate a lot of sweet potatoes and greens that day. Why not reserve red for nutrients that are in a danger zone-like too much sodium?

Comments

  • Hi Anonymoose2,

    Thanks for your feedback! Vitamin A is a tricky one since only pre-formed vitamin A poses a risk for toxicity symptoms, not the precursors that our body can convert to vitamin A if we need it, such as beta-carotene. (The exception may be for smokers, where high doses of beta-carotene might increase the risk of lung cancer.)

    However, the types of vitamin A included on the nutrition information for a product may not be be specified. To err on the side of caution these also count towards the maximum target.

    Best,

    Karen Stark
    cronometer.com
    As always, any and all postings here are covered by our T&Cs:
    https://forums.cronometer.com/discussion/27/governing-terms-and-disclaimer

  • Thanks for your prompt answer. I still think that fruits and veggies, which don't have labels, shouldn't be considered to have toxic levels of Vitamin A. If I remember correctly, the study of smokers was using supplements, not food.

  • You are right - it was beta-carotene supplements that were associated with increased risk in smokers. It adds another level of complexity to separate supplemental beta-carotene and naturally occurring in foods from plant sources. That is a great idea to limit it to whole foods that are plant-based - thanks for your input!

    Best,

    Karen Stark
    cronometer.com
    As always, any and all postings here are covered by our T&Cs:
    https://forums.cronometer.com/discussion/27/governing-terms-and-disclaimer

  • thank you, Karen!

  • I just want to make sure that I fully understand what the "Vitamin A" tracker is tracking on Cronometer. Based on your earlier response, Karen, it sounds like any and all forms of Vitamin A, including the "precursors" are included in the total. Is this correct?

    I am trying to come up with a "perfect" daily meal plan for myself that would be easy to stick to and so far it does not include a single vegetable because every vegetable, especially leafy greens, have sent the Vitamin A out the roof. Avoiding vegetables doesn't quite sound right.

  • As Karen mentioned in a previous comment,

    "the types of vitamin A included on the nutrition information for a product may not be be specified. To err on the side of caution these also count towards the maximum target."

    Unfortunately, because we don't know the form indicated by companies on Nutrition labels, it would be difficult to separate these.

    You can view top contributors for vitamin A by hovering your mouse over the nutrient target bar in the Nutrients section of your diary (On the website version). On the mobile app, tap on the nutrient listed in the full report to view top contributors.

    As @Susan_RD_101 says in this thread,

    In general, I don't worry about exceeding nutrient targets from food alone; your body has pretty good systems in place to enhance/reduce absorption.

    Hilary
    cronometer.com
    As always, any and all postings here are covered by our T&Cs:
    https://forums.cronometer.com/discussion/27/governing-terms-and-disclaimer

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