Antioxidants lower risk of cataracts in women

February 5, 2008 in Nutrition for Older Adults, Nutrition Topics in the News, Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements, Women's Health

Antioxidants lower risk of cataracts in women

 The antioxidants vitamin E and lutein, from both food and supplements, may reduce women’s risk for cataracts, according to researchers from 

 In this study, more than 35,000 women who took supplements of vitamin E and lutein were followed for an average of 10 years.

The researchers found that the more vitamin E and lutein the women used, the less likely they were to have cataracts. Compared with the women who consumed the least antioxidants, those who consumed the most reduced their risk for cataracts by 14 percent with vitamin E and 18 percent with lutein.

Vegetable oils, nuts, leafy green vegetables and whole grains are sources of vitamin E, and lutein is found in various fruits, corn, kale, spinach and other vegetables.

Previous studies have linked high intake of vegetables and fruits to lower risk of cataracts. Cataracts are  characterized by a gradual clouding of the lens of the eye, resulting in decreased field of vision and eventual blindness.

Women are advised to consume at least 15 mg of vitamin E each day. One ounce (about 1 tbp.) of sunflower seeds or almonds contains about 7 mg of vitamin. Try sprinkling some unsalted sunflower seeds or silvered almonds on your next green salad to boost your antioxidant intake!

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