Patients with macular degeneration need nutritional supplements, and we’ll tell you shortly why nutrients from diet alone won’t do!
But first, a briefer on macular degeneration:
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a condition in which the cells of the macula start to slowly stop working correctly. There are two main types of AMD—wet and dry. In the dry type, the cells slowly die off, causing a loss in central vision. In the wet type, the eye attempts to compensate by growing blood vessels. However, these vessels are fragile and grow incorrectly, leading to bleeds at the back of the eye.
It’s a great idea to boost the quality of your diet for many reasons. Evidence shows that taking supplements may slow the progression of AMD, though they are not a cure for AMD.
The Age-Related Eye Disease Studies (AREDS and AREDS 2) show high-quality long term evidence of the benefits of supplements in people who are already diagnosed with AMD. Please note that the AREDS study showed that the formula had no effect on those with no AMD or only very early signs of AMD or for those with advanced disease in both eyes.
Theoretically if more anti-oxidant nutrients were present in the eye, less damage should be done to the eye.
The current recommended daily formula to slow down the progression of AMD in people already diagnosed is:
- 500mg of vitamin C
- 400 international units (equivalent to about 270mg) of vitamin E
- 10mg lutein
- 2mg zeaxanthin
- 25mg or 80mg zinc as zinc oxide (as recommended by your doctor)
- 2mg copper as cupric oxide
Why Diet Alone Won’t Do
Looking at the list above, that’s quite a few different nutrients you need to have! It’s not practical to get all of these nutrients through diet alone because you would need to eat:
- over 7 oranges / day to get that amount of vitamin C!
- 135g of oysters / day to get the amount of zinc!
- a heaping cup of almonds / day to get the recommended amount of vitamin E!
You get what we mean.
The market offers many different forms of these supplements, ranging from Australian-made tablets (some which you only need to take once a day) to delicious powdered orange-flavoured drink forms. Taking in supplements from a trusted source may be a good idea not just for macular degeneration but for your general eye health!
Please consult an optometrist, ophthalmologist or doctor before commencing these supplements.