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A vitamin A precursor (also called pro-vitamin A) and one of the many plant pigments known collectively as carotenoids. It's the most prevalent carotenoid in plants.
These plant pigments are potent antioxidants, protecting against free-radicals.
There most accessible source is in cantaloupe melon, carrots, leafy-green vegetables, pumpkins and sweet potatoes. The micro-algae Spirulina and dunaliella are among the highest sourse of beta carotene. See Beta-Carotene; Medicinal uses: