Did you know that dietary and exercise factors affect age-related macular degneration (AMD) incidence and progression by reducing oxidative stress? Low consumption of fish, vegetables, and antioxidants including vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc are associated with increased risk of AMD. Low consumption of carotenoids, particularly lutein and zeaxanthin- both found in green leafy vegetables, is also associated with an increased risk of AMD.
Did you know that the retina has the highest rate of metabolism in the body and consumes the most oxygen? It’s true – which means the retina needs to be resupplied with nutrients every day to function at its best. The macular pigment of the retina is composed of lutein and zeaxanthin and the highest amount of these nutrients are found in the inner layers of the fovea and rod outer segments of the retina. In addition, omega- 3 fatty acids function as antioxidants by protecting ocular cells against light, oxygen, and damage to the eyes.
LUTEIN & ZEAXATHIN
Critical to the health of the macula are the carotenes lutein and zeaxathin. These carotenes function in preventing oxidative damage to the area of the retina responsible for fine vision.
Foods containing lutein & zeaxathin (often found together in foods): dark leafy greens, arugula, oranges, broccoli, peas, collard greens, spinach, corn, summer squash, egg yolks, turnip greens, kale, pistachios, cucumber, celery.
Nutritional antioxidants like beta-carotene, vitamins C and E, zinc, copper, and selenium are extremely important for eye health. While research has often focused on just one of these nutrients, studies conducted by the Age-Related Eye Disease Study Research Group (AREDS) confirm that a combination of these nutrients produce better results than any single nutrient alone. You can find macular degeneration vitamins, AREDS2 Formula, in your local pharmacy.
Foods containing beta-carotene: apricots, beet greens, cantaloupes, carrots, kale, red peppers, pumpkin, spinach, butternut squash, sweet potatoes
Foods containing vitamin C: bell peppers, kale, kiwi, papayas, oranges, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, grapefruit, potatoes, strawberries
Foods containing vitamin E: almonds, hazelnuts, mangos, peanut butter, sunflower oil, sunflower seeds, sweet potatoes, wheat germ
Foods containing zinc: beans, beef, cashews, fortified cereal, dark meat chicken, oysters, peanuts, pork, crab, pumpkin seeds
OMEGA-3 FATTY ACIDS
Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oils play an important role in eye health as well.
Foods containing omega-3 fatty acids: anchovies, canola oil, flax seed, bluefish, walnuts, herring, sardines, omega 3 eggs, salmon
Download our healthy vision shopping list to take with you to the supermarket!
This information does not provide, and is not a replacement for, professional medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. MVRF makes no guarantee or representation about the accuracy or completeness of this information.