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This Combination Could Slow Vision Loss

A combination of vitamin A and a nutrient called lutein may slow vision loss according to a recent study published in the April 2010 issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

Lutein is a nutrient found in numerous foods and is most common in green, leafy vegetables like spinach and kale as well as egg yolks and animal fat.

For the study, researchers from the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary recruited 225 non-smoking people between 18 and 60 years of age. All of the participants had an eye condition called Retinitis Pigmentosa, which refers to a group of hereditary eye disorders that lead to progressive vision loss.

At the start of the study, the participants were divided into two groups. One group received vitamin A only (1,500 micrograms) or vitamin A plus lutein (12 mg per day) for four years.

According to the researchers, under normal conditions someone with Retinitis Pigmentosa would lose their mid-peripheral vision by age 51. Participants that took the lutein plus vitamin A saw that extended to age 61, a significant increase.

A number of studies have previously linked lutein to eye health and these findings further extend that research. Vitamin A, on the other hand, has been shown to have benefits that included skin health and keeping the cells in our body energized and active.

You can find Vitamin A (and lutein) in supplement form, and you can also get plenty of vitamin A through diet alone. Some of the top sources of vitamin A include:

• Beef liver

• Egg yolk

• Cheddar cheese

• Fortified milk

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