Lutein, zeaxanthin may reduce cataract risk: Study

Lutein and zeaxanthin may protect the lens of the eye from oxidative stress and reduce the risk of cataracts, says a new study.
The protective effects of lutein or zeaxanthin were reported to be similar to those of vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol).
The study adds to an ever-growing body of science supporting the role of lutein and zeaxanthin for eye health, with the majority supporting their role against age-related amcular degeneration, the leading cause of legal blindness for people over 55 years of age in the Western world.
The researchers took cells from the human lens and soaked them in lutein, zeaxanthin, or alpha-tocopherol for 48 hours before exposing them to the oxidizing compound hydrogen peroxide (H202) for one hour. They then measured the various markers of oxidative stress, DNA damage, and cell viability.
Results showed that H202 significantly increased levels of oxidized proteins, lipid peroxidation, and DNA damage, while such damage was reduced when the cells were incubated with lutein, zeaxanthin, and alpha-tocopherol.
«These data indicate that lutein or zeaxanthin supplementation protects lens protein, lipid and DNA from oxidative damage and improves intracellular redox status upon oxidative stress,» wrote the researchers.
«The protective effects are comparable to that of alpha-tocopherol, except that lutein and zeaxanthin cannot compensate for GSH depletion. The data imply that suficient intake of lutein and zeaxanthin may reduce the risk for senile cataract via protecting the lens from oxidative damage.»
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Source: Nutraingredients