retinol activity equivalents

ret·i·nol ac·tiv·i·ty e·quiv·a·lents

(RAE) (ret'i-nol ak-tiv'i-tē ē-kwiv'ă-lĕnts)
A measure of vitamin A activity based on the capacity of the body to convert provitamin carotenoids containing at least one unsubstituted ionone ring to retinaldehyde. 1 microgram RAE = 1 mg retinol = 12 mg β-carotene = 24 mg other vitamin A precursor carotenoids.
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1) Because of the variation in the conversion rate of carotenoids to retinol, daily vitamin A requirements are expressed in micrograms (meg) of Retinol Activity Equivalents (RAE), a unit that takes into consideration the ease of absorption depending on the source of vitamin A.