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Macular Degeneration Update

A large long term study has concluded that air pollution is linked to a heightened risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Air pollution has been implicated in brain conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and stroke, and linked to elevated glaucoma risk. Particulate matter exposure is one of the strongest predictors of morality among air pollutants. First author Dr Sharon Chua said higher levels of air pollution may cause the cells to be more vulnerable to adverse changes and increase the risk of AMD.

Researchers at UQ have discovered that orange capsicums are the richest source of the orange pigment zeaxanthin, a carotenoid, that accumulates in the human macular from dietary sources to protect against blue light and, therefore, macular degeneration. Because zeaxanthin cannot be produced by the body, its presence is reliant on diet or supplements, however it is found in very small amounts in most fruit and vegetables.

From Mivision March 2021 Issue 165 pp. 14-16.

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