Within the retina of the eye there are two very important carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin. While it is interesting to note that both zeaxanthin and lutein have an identical chemical makeup, they are separated by the fact that there is a double bond that is apparent in one of the ends of the rings in lutein. However, when you are looking to the central section of the retina zeaxanthin is the main isomer that affects this portion of the eye. This can be important when you are looking into the relationship between these compounds and different diseases that can be found within the eye.

For example, there has been scientific research into the evidence that lowered zeaxanthin levels in the plasma could indicate that one was at a higher risk for developing age related macular degeneration. This disease is one that can be crippling as it is something that slowly robs someone of their eyesight as they get older, slowly putting them into a world of blurs and shadows. The damage caused by this disease only affects the central portion of the eye, leaving the peripheral vision intact. It is because of this fact that many researchers have linked zeaxanthin to this problem since it is the main isomer for the central portion of the retina.

Some doctors are even suggesting supplements with zeaxanthin in them to help people who are over the age of fifty and are worried about macular degeneration. On top of this, there is a belief by some that these kinds of supplements may also be able to assist those people who are dealing with the development of cataracts. If you are not able to easily find a supplement that you can take to help reduce your zeaxanthin levels, there are certain foods that you can take to help increase the amount of this isomer that is found in your body. For example greens like kale, romaine lettuce, broccoli, zucchini, Brussels sprouts, and peas are good sources of zeaxanthin; however, so are kiwis and goji berries. The reason that it is found in so many common foods and vegetables is that zeaxanthin is a very common occurrence in nature.

If you are interested in taking zeaxanthin (either by supplement or by natural resource) you should know that the daily recommended amount for someone is six to ten milligrams. This is the amount that is recommended each day to make sure that your eyes are staying as healthy as possible. However, if you are planning on using a daily supplement to get your recommended dosage of zeaxanthin each day then you should know that most of these pills only have about half of the daily allotment that is recommended. In order to get an adequate dose if you are taking these medications you will have to double the intake. Also, it has been found that if you take at least thirty milligrams of vitamin C in addition with the zeaxanthin supplement that the absorption rate will be a lot better.

With the very clear links that can be made between lowered levels of zeaxanthin in your blood’s plasma and the formation of cataracts, as well as the development of macular degeneration, it is important to note that this could be an important supplement to add to your dietary regimen. Just be sure that you try to get as much as possible through either a combination of natural sources, or if you are taking a supplement you will want to check to make sure that the amount of zeaxanthin in the pills is in the target range of six to ten milligrams a day. After all, you do not want to waste your time taking a supplement that is not going to be that much help when it is all said and done.

Last updated on Dec 7th, 2009 and filed under Health Supplements. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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