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Lutein and Zeaxanthin May Help With Photostress and Disability Glare

Photostress is the amount of time the eye takes to return to normal after being exposed to a bright light. Disability glare is a degradation of contrast caused by a reduction in visual performance. A recent study suggests that taking a lutein and zeaxanthin supplement may improve recovery from photostress and disability glare.


Participants in the study included 59 healthy young people who were given either a supplement containing 10 mg lutein and 2 mg zeaxanthin isomers, a supplement containing 20 mg of lutein and 4 mg of zeaxanthin isomers, or a placebo daily for 12 months.


At the conclusion of the study, the researchers noted improvement in macular pigment density, visual performance in glare, and photostress in the two supplement groups, when compared with the placebo. Improvements were noted at six months, with more improvements after 12 months. There were no differences in improvements between the two different supplement groups.


Researchers from the University of Georgia conducted the study. It was published on November 11, 2016, in the journal Eye and Vision.


Lutein and zeaxanthin are the only two carotenoids that can build macular pigment. Lutein and zeaxanthin create the yellow pigmentation of the macula, which is the part of the eye that provides protection from damaging blue light. If the yellow macular pigment is too thin, blue light can penetrate the retina and cause long-term damage.


You can increase your lutein and zeaxanthin levels by consuming more green leafy vegetables, corn, and egg yolk.

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