>Lutein For the Eyes or Should you just eat your Spinach?

>Here is a Nutraceutical that is helpful for the eyes. LUTEIN

Some people take a supplement of Lutein, but you can get it naturally from green vegetables, especially spinach. Lutein and Zeaxanthin are unique carotenoids because they selectively accumulate in the  retina of mammals. They give the area of the retina that serves central vision,  the macula lutea, its yellow color. Lutein and Zeaxanthin both have antioxidant activity and may be helpful in prevention of and  slowing down macular degeneration.
There is evidence that a diet high in carotenoids is associated with a lower risk of macular degeneration.
There are 2 forms of lutein available for use in supplements and functional foods- purified crystalline lutein and lutein esters. Some studies suggest doses of lutein between 2.4 – 30 mg day. ( but see your MD for his opinion on dosage)
For cataracts- Since cataract surgery is the most common surgery in older adults, lutein and zeaxanthin may play a role in prevention.
Diet seems to be the solution. Studies indicate that people who eat more fruit and vegetables are less likely to  develop a cataract.
So eat your spinach!
Spinach is also an excellent source of Vitamin K. It is a rich source of minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium and manganese. It is also rich in folate, a water soluble B Vitamin which is good for cognitive functioning. Spinach is high in Vitamin A and related compounds such as beta- carotene, Zeaxanthin, lutein, carotenoids that act as protection for the eye.
Spinach is one of the richest sources of Lutein. Spinach contains nearly 30,000 micrograms per cup of  spinach. Spinach is also rich in glycolipids, powerful phytochemicals known to have cancer cell growth suppression.
Taken in part from:  Grotto, D ( 2011) 101 Foods that could Save your Life! New York, NY. Bantam Books
Lockwood, B. ( (2007)  Nutraceuticals.2nd Ed.London, UK. Pharmaceutical Press.

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This entry was posted on Friday, January 13th, 2012 at 7:22 pm and is filed under Vitamins and Health. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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