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    Tuesday, September 15, 2009

    AMDPatients are focusing on supplements to help prevent or slow age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of adult blindness. It is is a degenerative disease of the central portion of the retina (the macula) that results primarily in loss of central vision. Central vision is required for activities such as driving, reading, watching television, and performing activities of daily living. The Eye Diseases Prevalence Research Group (EDPRG) estimated that the prevalence AMD in adults age 40 and over in the United States was 1.47 percent, affecting 1.75 million people, in the year 2000, and projected that by 2020 AMD would affect almost three million people. A variety of potential risk factors have been suggested. Heavy alcohol use (more than three drinks per day) is associated with an increased risk for early AMD. AMD appears to be more prevalent in whites than in blacks with an intermediate prevalence in Hispanics and Chinese. Data are conflicting on the role of hypertension , higher body mass index, and sunlight.

    AMDPatients are focusing on supplements to help prevent or slow age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

    High doses of beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc in a specific product called PreserVision slows progression and loss of visual acuity in people who already have macular degeneration.But now there are concerns about whether these doses are safe. High doses of beta-carotene seem to increase the risk of lung cancer in smokers...and high doses of vitamin E might increase mortality. Now the NIH is testing a lutein and fish oil combo to see if it will slow progression of age-related macular degeneration.

    Diets high in foods that contain lutein or fish oil seem to show a benefit...but this doesn't always translate to supplements.

    DIETARY lutein seems to lower the risk of developing macular degeneration. Lutein is a yellow pigment that's concentrated in the macula and filters out harmful light. I encourage people to eat foods such as corn, spinach, broccoli, orange juice, grapes, etc.

    Lutein SUPPLEMENTS are assumed to help...but so far there's no proof they prevent or slow the progression of macular degeneration.

    I tell people not to count on Centrum Silver and other multivits with small amounts of lutein to prevent macular degeneration.

    NIH is testing 10 mg/day of lutein, but it's too soon to recommend this high of a dose.

    Dietary omega-3 fatty acids from fish or nuts seem to protect against early macular degeneration...but there's no proof that fish oil SUPPLEMENTS have the same benefit.

    I tell patients their best bet for prevention is to wear sunglasses and avoid smoking and heavy alcohol drinking.

    Please remember, as with all our articles we provide information, not medical advice.
    For any treatment of your own medical condition you must visit your local doctor, with or without our article[s]. These articles are not to be taken as individual medical advice.

    *Tune in later for Infant Mortality.

    Deepen your understanding of "medical malpractice"...

    For more health info and links visit the author's web site


    1. Along with the benefits to eye health that lutein is known to provide new research has shown another benefit. A study recently completed at Harvard by Dr. Salvador Gonsalez concludes that it can protect us from UVB light. This is the type of light which causes sunburn and skin cancer.

    2. New Diet Taps into Innovative Plan to Help Dieters Lose 20 Pounds within Just 21 Days!