Research findings featured in the Journal of the American Medical Association report that a diet high in beta carotene, vitamins C and E and zinc is associated with a substantially reduced risk of age related macular degeneration in elderly people.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease that attacks the central part of the retina called the macula, which controls fine, detailed vision. The condition results in progressive loss of visual sharpness making it difficult to drive a car, read a book and recognize faces. AMD affects more than two million Canadians over the age of 50 and is the leading cause of severe vision loss in older adults.
Researchers at Erasmus Medical Centre in the Netherlands investigated whether antioxidants present in normal daily foods could play a role in the prevention of age related macular degeneration. During the study period of over ten years, researchers found a significant inverse relationship between intake of beta carotene, vitamin E and C and zinc and the development of macular degeneration.
This study suggests that a diet high in these antioxidants can modify the risk of developing macular degeneration.
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