Designed as an adjunct to a healthy diet, researched backed nutritional supplements have been shown to be beneficial for the maintenance of vision and eye health. Ongoing research continues to explore health protective nutrition in prevention of age-related eye changes that can cause visual disturbances and the loss of visual acuity. Beginning around age 40, adults may start to notice vision changes, such as an inability to focus on near objects, the need for brighter lights in reading or work areas, and changes in color perception, as well as reduced tear production, resulting in dry, irritated eyes. As we continue to age, the risk for developing eye and vision problems increases. Early warning signs of eye health problems can include:
Vision fluctuation – Vision that fluctuates throughout the day can be attributed to several causes, including general fatigue, eye muscle spasms resulting from intense focusing for an extended period, or progressing presbyopia, a common age-related inability to focus on near items, such as a newspaper or menu, especially in dim light.
Eye floaters and flashes of bright light – Specks or thread-like images that appear in the field of vision are generally harmless and may become less noticeable with time. Floaters indicate that the vitreous humor, a gel-like substance that makes up a large majority of the eye behind the lens, is slowly shrinking with age, creating strands that cast their shadows on the retina. Flashing occurs when the vitreous gel tugs or bumps the retina. Although floaters and flashers can be annoying, they are generally considered harmless. However, a new onset of floaters or increased flashes can signal more serious vision problems, such as retinal detachment or a retinal tear, requiring a visit to your ophthalmologist as soon as possible.
Loss of peripheral vision – Peripheral or side vision is the ability to see movement and objects located outside your central or direct line of vision. Also known as tunnel vision, loss of wide angle vison is commonly the result of optic nerve damage, resulting from glaucoma, a detached retina, brain or neurological damage or a head injury.
Distorted images – Wavy or blurred images or loss of central vision may be signs of age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss among adults aged 50 and older. Although there are exceptions, macular degeneration generally progresses slowly. The greatest risk factor is aging, making regular comprehensive eye exams crucial for seniors. Additional risk factors include diabetes, genetics, and side effects of medications taken for chronic conditions.
A colorful and varied diet, rich in omega-3 fats, whole fruits and dark green leafy vegetables is emphasized for eye, vision and overall health. As well, protecting your eyes from ultraviolet light, avoiding smoking, reducing screen related eye strain, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy weight along with normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels, may help to prevent macular degeneration or slow its progression. Age Related Eye Disease (ARED) studies revealed that antioxidant multivitamins can help to protect against progression to advanced stages of macular degeneration in those who have been diagnosed with the condition.
Poor diet resulting in inadequate nutrition is associated with many serious health conditions including vision loss. Research shows that vitamins and nutrients that help reduce inflammation and control oxidative stress are beneficial for maintaining eye and vision health and may offer protection from degenerative diseases, including macular degeneration and cataracts.
Vitamin A promotes good vision, especially in low light. Well known for its supportive role in healthy vision and prevention of night blindness, vitamin A helps to protect the cornea and mucous membranes of the eye surface, helping to reduce the risk of eye infections.
B Complex vitamins help to reduce chronic inflammation and elevated homocysteine levels associated with retinal vascular problems. B vitamins may also help reduce the risk of macular degeneration.
Vitamin C has powerful antioxidant properties that help protect the eye lens by preventing oxidation, which can result in a clouded lens associated with cataract formation.
Vitamin D sufficiency is associated with a lower risk of macular degeneration, while a deficiency is strongly associated with dry eye and its level of severity.
Lutein and zeaxanthin are carotenoids that are found in the eyes. Many studies have shown that lutein and zeaxanthin support eye health and reduce the risk of chronic eye diseases, including cataracts and macular degeneration.
Omega-3 essential fatty acids, DHA and EPA, are among the most important nutrients for proper visual development, retinal function, and life-long eye maintenance. DHA is found in the highest concentration in the retina. Omega-3 deficiency is linked to dry eye syndrome, diabetic retinopathy and age related macular degeneration. Essential fatty acids help to restore and maintain tear formation and eye lubrication.
Bioflavonoids are pigments responsible for giving plants, fruits and vegetables their vibrant colors. These biologically active antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds aid the absorption of vitamin C, help increase antioxidant efficiency, and support capillary health, including eye capillaries.
Professional Supplement Center carries these and other high quality supplements and nutraceuticals in support of eye and overall health:
Vision Protect™ by LuxVite Naturals – Ophthalmologist formulated with ingredients based on the ARED2 study, Vision Protect™ contains antioxidant vitamins, B vitamins, lutein, and zeaxanthin, providing eye health support for macular degeneration. Gluten free, vegetarian formulation.
Doctor’s Choice™ Eye Formula by Enzymatic Therapy – This vitamin, mineral and botanical formula provides comprehensive nutritional support for eye health and healthy vision. Gluten and dairy free formulation.
ON SALE ProDHA Eye® by Nordic Naturals – This synergistic blend of purified pharmaceutical-grade fish oil provides a high concentration of DHA, plus antioxidant vitamin E, lutein, and zeaxanthin in support of healthy vision and moisture levels, as well as age-related oxidative damage protection. Gluten and dairy free, Non-GMO formulation.
Eye and Body Complete™ by BioSyntrx – This full-spectrum, balanced, whole body nutritional formula provides superior active ingredients to support vision function, macular and retinal health, and address vascular-related inflammatory diseases of the body and retina.
Lutein/Zeaxanthin by Pure Encapsulations – This formula provides a high strength carotenoid blend of lutein and zeaxanthin to specifically support the macula and overall vision health and function. Gluten and soy free, Non-GMO vegetarian formulation.
What you can do about floaters and flashes in the eye. http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/what-you-can-do-about-floaters-and-flashes-in-the-eye-201306106336
Facts About Age-Related Macular Degeneration. https://nei.nih.gov/health/maculardegen/armd_facts
Facts About Presbyopia. https://nei.nih.gov/health/errors/presbyopia
What is Macular Degeneration? https://www.macular.org/what-macular-degeneration
Adult Vision: 41 to 60 Years of Age. http://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?sso=y
Essential Fatty Acids, Omega 3. http://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/caring-for-your-vision/diet-and-nutrition/essential-fatty-acids?sso=y