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Zeaxanthin, Lutein, and Omega-3s Together May Contribute to Improved Vision

Macular pigment optical density is an indicator of xanthophyll levels in the eyes, and may be a biomarker for predicting the risk of eye disease. A recent study suggests that supplementation with zeaxanthin, with or without lutein and omega-3s, may increase macular pigment optical density and visual processing speed.

Participants in the study included 69 young people between the ages of 18 and 32. Over the course of four months, they were given 20 mg of zeaxanthin, 26 mg of zeaxanthin in combination with 8 mg of lutein and 190 mg of omega-3s or a placebo. Macular pigment optical density and temporal contrast sensitivity function were measured at the onset and conclusion of the study.

At the end of the study, the combination supplement group and the zeaxanthin-only group both showed increases of 20% in macular pigment optical density and increases of 20% in temporal processing speed. The placebo group had no changes.

Researchers from SUNY Oswego and the University of Georgia, Athens, conducted the study. It was published DATE in Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics.

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 vegetables, corn, and egg yolk.

Omega-3s have been linked to a number of health benefits, including alleviating arthritis pain, better moods, improved joint mobility, helping with age related macular degeneration, and aiding your immune system.

Because omega-3 fatty-acids are not found naturally in the human body, it is especially important to make sure that they are a part of your daily diet. Oily, dark fish such as tuna and salmon are high in DHA and EPA omega-3s.

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