Posted on Mar 27, 2012, 6 a.m.
Lutein and zeaxanthin may reduce cataract risk.
In that oxidative stress is thought to factor in to the development of cataracts, some previous studies have suggested that the antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin, may exert an interventive role in reducing cataract risk. Jouni Karppi, from the University of Eastern Finland (Finland), analyzed data collected on 1,689 men and women, ages 61 to 80 years, enrolled in the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study. Finding 113 cases of incident age-related cataracts (of which 108 were nuclear cataracts), and after adjusting for confounding variables, the team found that subjects in the highest third of plasma concentrations of lutein and zeaxanthin had 42 and 41 % lower risks of nuclear cataract, respectively, as compared with those in the lowest third. The study authors conclude that: “high plasma concentrations of lutein and zeaxanthin were associated with a decreased risk of age-related nuclear cataract in the elderly population.”
Jouni Karppi, Jari A. Laukkanen, Sudhir Kurl. “Plasma lutein and zeaxanthin and the risk of age-related nuclear cataract among the elderly Finnish population.” British Journal of Nutrition, 18 Oct. 2011.