Zeaxanthin improves elderly vision

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Zeaxanthin improves elderly vision

Related tags: Age-related macular degeneration, Macular degeneration, Amd

Elderly people have better night vision and are better able to discern fine details, when taking zeaxanthin, a military study has found.

The study followed 60 war veterans with early signs of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) who were given 8mg of zeaxanthin daily. They showed a better ability to drive at night and improved reading of an eye chart between 1.5 and 8.5 lines. Blind spots also improved.

The study followed 60 elderly veterans with early over a 12-month period that consumed 8 mg of dietary Zeaxanthin daily, showed improvement in the ability to drive at night, recognition of fine detail - an average improvement of 1.5 lines or 8.5 letters on an eye chart, and the disappearance of blind spots.

The study was led by Stuart Richer, PhD, OD at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Chicago, and published in the November issue of the Journal of Optometry .

AMD is a degenerative retinal disease that causes central vision loss and leaves only peripheral vision, and the leading cause of legal blindness for people over 55 years of age in the Western world, according to AMD Alliance International.

Those in the study were given either 8mg of zeaxanthin, 9mg of lutein, or a combination of both daily over a 12-month period. All groups improved in the vision measures tested.

“In older male patients [zeaxanthjin improved] foveal cone-based visual parameters, whereas [lutein] enhanced those parameters associated with gross detailed rod-based vision, with considerable overlap between the 2 carotenoids,” ​the researchers found.

“The equally dosed (atypical dietary ratio) [zeaxanthin plus lutein] fared worse in terms of raising MPOD [macula pigment optical density], presumably because of duodenal, hepatic-lipoprotein or retinal carotenoid competition. These results make biological sense based on retinal distribution and [zeaxanthin] foveal predominance.”


Journal of the American Optometric Associatio


‘Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of zeaxanthin and visual function in patients with atrophic agerelated macular degeneration’

Authors: Richer et al

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