Tag Archives: Macular Support Formula by Pure Encapsulations

Cataracts and Vision Health

CataractsVisionHealthJacquie Eubanks RN BSN

Once thought to be an inevitable consequence of aging, we now know that cataracts have several interrelated causes. Although commonly found in those over age 60, cataract formation normally takes years to develop and may begin as early as age 40. Statistics show that by age 80 more than half of all Americans will either have cataracts or will have undergone surgery to remove them. While controversy continues over whether cataract growth can be prevented or slowed, there is general agreement that oxidative stress may be one factor behind cataract development. Family history, diabetes, smoking, previous eye injury and prolonged unprotected exposure to ultraviolet sunlight increase the risk of cataract development.

While cataracts are small and developing, there is little effect on vision. As cataracts worsen, common symptoms such as cloudy or blurred vision, sensitivity to light or glare, double vision, color fading, frequent eyeglass or contact prescription changes, or difficult night vision may occur. While cataracts negatively affect vision, they generally don’t cause damage to the eyes as some eye diseases do. In early stages, brighter lighting, prescription eyeglasses, and anti-glare sunglasses may help to improve vision. Eventually, when vision changes interfere with everyday life, a surgical procedure to remove the clouded lens and replace it with a new plastic lens is commonly performed.

As we age, the cumulative impact of oxidant stress and protein degradation distorts the delicate eye lenses. A factor in the development of age-related cataracts is protein misfolding or clumping. These deformed proteins, which become opaque and unable to transmit light, accumulate within the clear lens of the eye. Protein misfolding results from nonezymatic glycation, in which sugars become chemically bound to amino acids, proteins, and other essential biomolecules, distorting their structure. Glycation is one of the underlying causes of cataract formation. The process of glycation, along with oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, and DNA damage, hastens the aging process in all cells, tissues and organs.

New Studies. Researchers have been investigating carnosine and N-acetyl carnosine in relation to cataract development and visual performance in cataract affected eyes. A non-essential combination of two amino acids, anti-aging carnosine is highly concentrated in the brain and heart, as well as muscle and nerve cells. Carnosine has been shown to have a protective effect against neurodegeneration, cardiovascular disease and cognitive decline. As an antiglycation agent and oxidative stress reducer, carnosine has been shown in human, animal and laboratory studies to help reduce glycated lens proteins, prevent the loss of lens protective enzymes, and to delay clouding of the lens.

Researchers from National Institute of Health have shown that N-acetyl-carnosine 1% eye drops demonstrated high efficacy and good tolerability for prevention and treatment of visual impairment for the older population. Other studies demonstrated improvement in overall light transmission, glare sensitivity, and visual sharpness.

Have regular eye exams. As with many chronic or age-related diseases, prevention is the best strategy. Many serious eye diseases have no early warning signs, so it’s important to make regular eye exams part of a standard health care routine. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends an initial dilated eye exam at age forty and annual dilated eye exams beginning at age 60.

Quit smoking. To reduce the risk of developing cataracts, give up smoking. Smoking contributes to a number of health conditions including heart disease, stroke and lung cancer, and can lead to macular degeneration, glaucoma, dry eye syndrome, cataract formation, and blindness.

Maintaining optimal vision health and eyesight requires adequate nutrition. Certain nutrients are particularly beneficial to eye health. A diet high in antioxidant-rich nutrients and omega-3 essential fatty acids is good for heart, brain and eye health. Green leafy vegetables, such as kale and spinach, provide lutein and zeaxanthin, two nutrients found in healthy eyes that are believed to protect against macular degeneration and cataracts. Studies suggest that omega-3 rich cold-water fish, such as salmon and sardines, may reduce the risk of developing eye disease later in life. Zinc, found in legumes, beans, red meat and oysters is an essential trace mineral found in high concentration in the eyes. Zinc may help protect the eyes from the damaging effects of sunlight, as well as macular degeneration.

Vitamin C is an antioxidant critical to eye health. Science has shown that the eyes need relatively high amounts of vitamin C for proper function. Including antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables in your daily diet may help to prevent or delay cataracts and macular degeneration. Orange-colored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, sweet potatoes, and cantaloupe, provide beta-carotene, a nutrient that assists night vision. Selenium, a component of antioxidant glutathione, may help to protect the lens and prevent age-related cataracts. Together with zinc, selenium may help protect against glaucoma, which can lead to optic nerve damage and blindness. Selenium is found in brazil nuts, tuna, and wheat germ.

Maintain healthy blood sugar. Diabetic eye disease comprises diabetic retinopathy, macular edema, glaucoma and cataracts, all of which have the potential to cause vision loss and blindness. Controlling or reversing diabetes with prescribed medications, physical activity, maintaining a healthy weight and eating a proper diet can help to prevent or delay vision loss. It’s imperative that those with diabetes have regular eye exams, as early detection can greatly reduce the risk of vision loss.

Wear sunglasses. Proper eyewear can help to protect your eyes from glare and sun damage. Exposure to UVA and UVB ultraviolet light can hasten the formation of cataracts even in younger people. A wide brimmed hat can further protect the eyes when spending time outdoors in any season.

Professional Supplement Center carries these and other high quality products in support of eye and vision health and overall wellness:

L-Carnosine 500L-Carnosine 500 by Maximum International: One capsule provides 500 mg of L-carnosine, the dosage recommended in scientific studies to support cellular rejuvenation, as well as brain, vision and muscle health. Manufactured in the USA in an FDA inspected facility.

 

Brite Eyes IIIBrite Eyes III by Life Extension®:  ON SALE! These FDA approved sterile eye drops alleviate eye discomfort with clinically validated lubricants. This formula also contains the antioxidant N-acetyl-carnosine shown to help protect against glycation.

 

Ultra Anti-Oxidant ...Ultra Anti-Oxidant by Douglas Laboratories®: This potent antioxidant supplement provides antioxidant vitamins, beta carotene, zinc, selenium and N-acetyl-cysteine in support of free radical and oxidative stress protection. Gluten, wheat, soy, dairy, sugar and artificial ingredient free formulation.

 

Macular Support...Macular Support Formula by Pure Encapsulations: This comprehensive hypoallergenic formula provides lutein, zeaxanthin, proanthocyanidins, amino acids, glutathione, mixed carotenoids, N-acetyl-cysteine, and vitamin C to provide exceptional free radical protection in retinal tissues. Gluten and soy free, Non-GMO vegetarian formulation.

 

Macula Eye PelletsMacula Eye Pellets by Natural Ophthalmics: This professional strength homeopathic formula provides ingredients to gently stimulate and help the eye counteract macular degeneration.

 

References:
Facts About Cataracts. https://nei.nih.gov/health/cataract/cataract_facts
Cataracts: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/157510.php
Efficacy of N-acetylcarnosine in treatment of cataracts. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12001824
Carnosine, Cataracts, and Visual Clarity. http://www.lifeextension.com/Magazine/2018/1/Carnosine-Cataracts-And-Visual-Clarity/Page-01
Recognizing Cataracts. https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/2013/08/recognizing-cataracts
Smoking Can Lead to Vision Loss or Blindness. https://www.health.ny.gov/prevention/tobacco_control/smoking_can_lead_to_vision_loss_or_blindness.htm
Four Fantastic Foods to Keep Your Eyes Healthy. https://www.aao.org/eye-health/news/four-fantastic-foods
Facts About Diabetic Eye Disease. https://nei.nih.gov/health/diabetic/retinopathy
Do Zinc and Selenium Help Eyesight? http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/zinc-selenium-eyesight-8608.html
N-Acetylcarnosine sustained drug delivery eye drips to control signs of ageless vision. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2685223/

 

 

 

Age Related Vision Changes

AgeRelatedVision-Jacquie Eubanks RN BSN

As we age, we experience changes in the structures of the eye. Some changes, like the waning of functional abilities, are considered within the normal limits, while other symptoms may signal the onset of disease processes. Those who have reached 40 years of age typically begin to notice changes to their visual acuity, or sharpness of vision. This common age-related condition, known as presbyopia, makes it difficult to focus and discern fine detail at close distances. Correctable with glasses or contact lenses, presbyopia will continue to progress slowly over time until around age 60.

When we are young, the lens of the eye is soft and flexible. Tiny muscles inside the eye can easily reshape the lens to focus on both near and distant objects. With aging, the lens begins to harden and muscle fibers are affected, resulting in difficulty in reading small print or seeing nearby objects clearly. While there is no current cure or known prevention strategies for presbyopia, with corrective lenses most individuals should be able to enjoy clear and comfortable vision.

The vitreous humor, a clear gel-like substance that fills the space between the lens and the retina, gives the eyes their shape and form. Millions of fine fibers in the vitreous humor are attached to the surface of the retina. As the vitreous shrinks and becomes more liquid with aging, fibers may pull away from the surface of the retina. This can cause tiny specks of tissue or debris to remain in the vitreous gel. Known as floaters, these tiny particles appear as dots, cobwebs or strings. What one is actually seeing is the shadow of the debris, as light is cast on the retina. In most cases, occasional spots or floaters are normal. They can be annoying, but many individuals become accustomed to them, and they generally don’t negatively affect vision.

Not everyone will experience the same vision changes. Common symptoms can include:

  • The need for brighter light, while reading or performing close-up tasks.
  • Decreased contrast sensitivity, or the ability to detect low contrast images, especially with low light, fog or glare situations. This can result in difficulty driving at night, or eyes may tire more easily while working on the computer or watching TV.
  • As it becomes harder for the eyes to focus, most experience difficulty reading without corrective lenses.
  • Changes in color perception. Some find it hard to distinguish between shades, such as blue and green.
  • Dry, irritated eyes resulting from reduced tear production. Particularly troublesome for menopausal women, adequate tears are necessary to keep eyes healthy and vision clear.

Individuals should be aware of early warning signs of other possible eye and vision problems:

  • Sudden development of floaters, flashes of light, or an appearance of a curtain over the field of vision could indicate a retinal tear or detachment, and should be treated as soon as possible to avoid vision loss.
  • Low contrast sensitivity can result in decreased depth perception, potentially resulting in missteps and falls. Reduced contrast sensitivity can also be a symptom of certain eye conditions, such as cataracts, glaucoma or diabetic retinopathy.
  • Chronic conditions, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, can damage tiny blood vessels of the retina or cause permanent vision loss. As fluctuating vision can be a sign of undiagnosed health conditions, a visit to an eyecare specialist is in order.
  • Loss of peripheral, or side vision can be a sign of glaucoma. Symptomless until vision damage is done, glaucoma damages the optic nerve, preventing the transmission of visual images to the brain.
  • Distorted images or a blind spot in the middle of one’s vision field can be signs of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the leading cause of vision loss among those aged 50 and older. AMD damages the macula, located in the center of the retina, that is necessary for sharp central vision. Central vision loss can affect the ability to read, drive, watch TV or recognize faces. Strong risk factors for AMD include aging, smoking, genetic factors, family history, sunlight exposure, and hypertension.

The impact of vision changes can have a significant effect on quality of life. It’s important to recognize the difference between reduced visual function in healthy individuals and specific eye related diseases. Yearly eye exams can mean early diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases, and preservation of vision health. Research has linked specific nutrients, that include lutein, zeaxanthin, zinc, and vitamins C and E, to reducing the risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration.

Nutrient supplementation may be helpful to support the heath of the eyes and vitreous:

  • In nature, lutein and zeaxanthin appear to absorb excess light energy to protect plants from too much sunlight, especially high energy rays called blue light. A number of studies have shown that lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants found in high concentration in the macula, may protect against light induced oxidative damage that could lead to AMD.
  • Highly concentrated in the eye, zinc plays a vital role in bringing vitamin A to the retina to produce melanin, a protective eye pigment. Impaired vision, such as poor night vision and cataracts have been linked to zinc deficiency.
  • Antioxidants fight oxidative damage and support general eye health. Natural antioxidants that include vitamins C and E and betacarotene have been shown to be of benefit in the prevention of AMD.
  • Hyaluronic acid (HA) is associated with balanced eye moisture. Oxidative stress can cause HA levels to decrease as we age.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for healthy vision, and may also improve circulation, strengthen the integrity of the blood vessels, and naturally support healthy inflammatory processes.
  • Several types of collagen are found in the eye. As collagen tends to degrade with aging, nutritional support for collagen heath may be helpful.
  • Vitamin D3 supports vision health, as well as cardiovascular, immune, skeletal and cognitive health.

Professional Supplement Center carries these and other fine quality products to support eye and overall health:

Eye Moisture Support...Eye Moisture Support by Douglas Laboratories®: This unique formula provides critical support for eye and retinal health, healthy tear production, and ocular moisture retention. Ingredients include QUELL Fish Oil®, vitamins and antioxidants. Gluten, wheat, soy, yeast and artificial ingredient free, Non-GMO formulation.

 

20/20 Eye Formula20/20 Eye Formula by Nutritional Frontiers: Specifically formulated for individuals with poor night vision, cataracts, AMD, or allergies that affect the eyes, this product provides antioxidants lutein, zeaxanthin, ALA, and astaxanthin, as well as zinc and vitamins A, C, and E for support and protection of eye health and function.

 

Vision ProtectVision Protect™ by LuxVite Naturals: Ophthalmologist formulated with selected vitamins and antioxidants, this product is designed to promote eye health and provide macular support. Laboratory tested for quality and purity.

 

Clinical Nutrients...Clinical Nutrients™ Eye Formula by Integrative Therapeutics®: This product is designed to provide valuable nutrients that support proper eye health and function. Ingredients include vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. Gluten, wheat, yeast, dairy, and artificial ingredient free formulation.

 

MacuGuard Ocular...MacuGuard® Ocular Support by Life Extension: This innovative formula provides comprehensive ocular nutrition to help protect macular health from oxidative stress and light-induced damage. Non-GMO formulation.

 

Macular Support...Macular Support Formula by Pure Encapsulations®: This comprehensive hypoallergenic formulation provides a blend of powerful antioxidants and botanicals designed to support, maintain, and improve macular health. Gluten and soy free, Non-GMO vegetarian formulation.

References:
Presbyopia. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMHT0023046/
Facts About Presbyopia. https://nei.nih.gov/health/errors/presbyopia
Adult Vision: 41 to 60 Years of Age. https://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/good-vision-throughout-life/adult-vision-19-to-40-years-of-age/adult-vision-41-to-60-years-of-age
Aging changes in the eye. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2585730/
About Age-Related Macular Degeneration. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMHT0024815/
Visual Acuity. https://www.sciencedaily.com/terms/visual_acuity.htm