New research findings published in the Archives of Ophthalmology suggest the intake of fatty acids found in fish may help prevent age-related maculopathy, a deterioration of the eye's retina that can lead to blindness.
These findings contradict recent findings from several studies in recent years that suggest a link between high fat intake -- from any source -- and a higher risk of age-related maculopathy (ARM), the leading cause of vision loss among the elderly.
The latest study lead by Australian researchers followed more than 3,600 older adults for five years found no evidence that dietary fat, of any kind, increased the risk of ARM.
Researchers did find men and women who ate the most omega-3 fatty acids had a lower risk of ARM than those with the lowest intakes. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fats are found largely in oily fish, and to a lesser extent in flaxseed, walnuts and soybeans.
Researchers found that people who ate fish at least once a week were 40 percent less likely to develop early ARM than their peers who ate fish less than once per month. People who ate fish three times per week had a substantially lower risk of advanced macular degeneration.
A diet rich in omega-3 fats may also help lower the risks of high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
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