As Healthy Vision Month approaches in May, it’s a good time to think about the things we can do to take care of our eyes. It should come as no surprise that diet plays a role.
Some scientific research points toward potential protective benefits for a number of nutrients. In one of the largest trials of its kind, the NEI found that taking high levels of specific antioxidants and zinc (the AREDS trial formulation, Ophthalmology. 2011 Nov;118(11):2113-9) can reduce the risk of developing advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by about 25 percent. And the AREDS2 trial found statistically significant positive findings for study subjects with the lowest dietary intakes of lutein and zeaxanthin by supplementing with those nutrients (JAMA Intern Med. 2014 Mar 17).
In an economic report by Frost & Sullivan, supported through a grant by the Council for Responsible Nutrition Foundation, lutein and zeaxanthin showed additional promise for societal health care cost savings and reducing the risk of costly medical events for U.S. adults over age 55 with ARED.
Learn more about Frost & Sullivan's report and how eye health ingredients help reduce health care costs in the article "When it Comes to Eye Health, Be a Visionary" in INSIDER's Eye Health Content Library.
Duffy MacKay, N.D., is senior vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs for the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), a trade association for the dietary supplement industry.