MacuHealth

macular pigment
Macular pigment can help with eye strain caused by use of computers and smartphones.

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

Do carrots boost your eyesight? Scientific American published an article that puts an end to the debate. 

What was their conclusion? Carrots are rich in the carotenoid beta-carotene; the body converts beta-carotene into vitamin A, which can improve your vision under certain conditions, such as a vitamin A deficiency. And while vitamin A is vital to prevent blindness and maintain the health of the cornea (the clear front of the eye), there isn’t a definite answer on how many carrots it would take to improve one’s vision.

But other vegetables are shown to boost eyesight because of the nutrients they contain. Broccoli, corn, squash and dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale are rich in the carotenoids Lutein and Zeaxanthin. These are two of the three carotenoids deposited in the central retina (called the “macula”), where they accumulate to form the macular pigment. These nutrients have a yellow-orange coloration that enables it to filter potentially harmful blue light.

They also protect against oxidative stress and inflammation and enhance visual performance. The macula is the part of the eye responsible for central vision, which most people consider to be the most vital aspect of your sight. It allows you to see fine detail, recognize faces, and read this text! Indeed, the central retina brings color and detail to everything you see.

How do you increase macular pigment? Is eating vegetables enough to replenish this small but vital substance in the eye? We’ll take a closer look at how to put more carotenoids in our diet.

What Do Lutein and Zeaxanthin Do?

As noted above, Lutein and Zeaxanthin are dietary carotenoids that filter damaging high-energy blue wavelength light from the visible-light spectrum by as much as 90 percent. They’re also antioxidants that protect against the damage caused by free radicals produced through normal body processes. Environmental sources of free radicals include cigarette smoke, air pollutants, radiation, certain drugs and environmental toxins.

How do you increase macular pigment with these carotenoids? In a 1994 Journal of American Medical Association report, Dr. Johanna M. Seddon and her associates at Harvard University found that six mg per day of lutein over the lifespan leads to a 43 percent lower risk for AMD.

 

“When we compared the amount of macular pigment, which is comprised of Lutein and Zeaxanthin, present in the eyes of people with age-related macular degeneration to people without the disease, those with the lowest levels of carotenoid accumulation in the outer retina were significantly more likely to suffer from age-related macular degeneration than those with higher pigment levels,” said Dr. Landrum. “The difference in risk between those having the highest and lowest levels was 75 percent.”

But Isn't There A Third Macular Carotenoid?

Meso-Zeaxanthin, the most potent antioxidant of the three macular carotenoids, is only found in the center of the macula, where vision is the sharpest. How do you increase macular pigment with Meso-Zeaxanthin? It’s obtained by an enzyme that converts ingested Lutein inside the retina. Most AMD patients have 30 percent less Meso-Zeaxanthin in their macula and are unable to convert Lutein into Meso-Zeaxanthin. To be sure you’ve got enough of all three macular carotenoids, a supplement containing all three is optimal.

Who Benefits from Enriching Macular Pigment?

Nearly everyone will benefit from enriching and maximizing macular pigment throughout their lifetime. Our diets are generally lower in nutrients, and modern technology has dictated that we’re exposed to more blue light. Although everyone can benefit from enriching macular pigment, the following people will benefit the greatest:

Children and Young Adults

This group is more susceptible to damage from high-energy blue light emitting from our computers, tablets, smartphones and energy-efficient fluorescent lights. Their lives revolve around these devices, and they’re holding them closer to their faces, which increases the intensity of blue light.

Pre- and Post-Cataract Patients

Post-cataract patients have had their crystalline lens removed and replaced with an intra-ocular lens. Once the lens of the eye is removed, the yellowing of this lens, which is also a natural blue light filter, is also removed. When the cataract is removed, the lens returns to its clear, child-like form. This makes the macula more susceptible to blue light and the photooxidation that accompanies it.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration

Patients diagnosed with age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a disease with no cure, have a significantly increased risk of blindness as the disease progresses. Often, the disease starts in one eye and can affect the other eye at some later time. The increased macular pigment can slow the progression of AMD, help save the vision in the diseased eye and potentially delay the onset of the disease in the other eye.

Furthermore, family members of those diagnosed with AMD are at higher risk of developing the disease. Family history and genetics are the greatest risk factors for developing AMD. If one of your parents, grandparents or a sibling has the disease, your risk of disease onset increases. Building up macular pigment earlier in life should be strongly considered.

Those with Visually Demanding Careers

People with occupations that have critical vision requirements can benefit significantly from increasing their macular pigment density. Several studies have shown that the enrichment of macular pigment optimizes visual performance for athletes, the military and the police.

How Do You Increase Macular Pigment, and Why Is It Vital for Our Vision?

We can’t take macular pigment for granted. It is no accident that the ingredients that make up this protective layer in the eye accumulate in the center of the retina, where vision is the sharpest (particularly color vision), and oxidative stress is abundant.

These ingredients limit injury at the retina by absorbing the amount of short wavelength (blue) visible light incident upon the photoreceptors. But humans cannot synthesize macular carotenoids – we need to obtain them from diet or supplementation. Our diets have fewer of these critical nutrients due to a significant increase in processed foods. Even a healthy diet often does not provide enough of these nutrients to protect our vision from oxidation over our lifetime.

Thankfully, there is a supplement that contains all three macular carotenoids in a dose that has been shown to significantly increase macular pigment: MacuHealth. MacuHealth is scientifically proven to protect the eye from damage, rebuild macular pigment and manage the symptoms of AMD.

MacuHealth

what does blue light do
What does blue light do to the retina? Read the answer below.

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

The optics of your eye projects an image onto the retina, much like an old-fashioned camera does with film. And just like a camera, any number of factors can cause harm to that system and change how you see the world. This includes the high-energy blue light that comes from your digital devices. So what does blue light do to your retina? We’ll look at how this vital area of the eye works and how our phones, tablets, and computers can affect our optical system.

How Does the Retina Work?

The retina, located in the back of the eye, is part of the central nervous system. Thus this area consists of several layers of networked cells and their “wiring.” One part of this network are photoreceptor cells, often referred to as rods and cones. These capture the light that reaches the retina, which initiate a cascade of chemical and electrical events. The brain communicates them to the optic nerve and translates all of these signals into visual perception.

The macula is a term to describe the center of the retina. Because this region is cone photoreceptor-dominated, it enables daylight and color vision and gives detail to what we see. The remainder of the retina is dominated by rods, which promote sensitivity to dim-light conditions, such as vision at night.

What Can Blue Light Do to Damage the Retina?

As stated above, the photoreceptor cells in the macula convert light to electric energy. Then the brain interprets these transmissions. This high metabolic activity is very demanding and requires a lot of energy and nutrition to fuel the entire process.

Additionally, the photoreceptor environment is necessarily rich in oxygen and requires exposure to visible light to see, adding to the macula’s metabolic demands. These twin stresses can lead to damage.

What does blue light do to harm the retina? Blue light is composed of relatively short wavelengths, which have higher energy. Becaise chronic exposure to this high-energy light can produce photo-oxidation, it can compromise retinal health and performance. And over a lifetime, chronic blue light exposure can damage your macula, degrade your visual performance, and could potentially contribute to the development of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

But there is a way to protect the eye. A single layer of cells behind the retina, known as retinal pigmented epithelium (RPE), nurtures the photoreceptors and removes waste products. One of these waste products from photoreceptor damage is known as lipofuscin (a yellow age pigment). This pigment accumulates over time in RPE cells and compromises their ability to function optimally (or at all).

As we age, lipofuscin fills the RPE cells, causing these cells to give out and extrude their contents. These cells, seen as lipids and proteins, are called drusen. The collection of these yellow deposits is a typical symptom of early AMD. Blue light interacts with lipofuscin to produce additional oxidative stress. This also causes further stress to the retina, increasing drusen formation and furthering the development of AMD.

What Does Macular Pigment Do?

What does blue light do to your vision in the long term? It’s scattered in front of the retina, contributing to glare and a reduction in contrast sensitivity, leading to a decline in visual performance.

You can find blue light in:

  • Sunlight
  • Smartphones, tablets and other hand-held electronic devices
  • Television and computer screens
  • Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs)

In front of the photoreceptors is macular pigment, which means it filters light before it reaches photoreceptors and RPE. This protects them from free radicals and photo-oxidative damage. It is composed of the carotenoids Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin. The highest concentration of cone photoreceptors is in the center of the macula, known as the fovea. This area is responsible for sharp central vision and color. Macular pigment protects the entire macula. However, Meso-Zeaxanthin protects the center (and most vulnerable) region. This conveniently gives the fovea the best antioxidant protection of the three macular carotenoids.

Low macular pigment can cause photo-oxidative stress to the macula. Because more blue light is exposed to the cone photoreceptors, particularly in the fovea, an insufficient amount of antioxidants are available to neutralize the damaging free radicals. Studies have shown that deficiencies in the carotenoids that make up the macular pigment are associated with poor visual performance and age-related macular degeneration.

What Can Be Done to Prevent Eye Damage?

How can we protect our eyes from what blue light does to our vision? The only way to replenish these vital antioxidants is through diet. Research shows that Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin can be found in foods such as spinach, broccoli, corn, and eggs. These vital nutrients can also be replenished through supplementation.

Peer-reviewed research proves that supplementation with Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin rebuilds macular pigment and enhances vision in diseased and healthy eyes. MacuHealth and MacuHealth Plus+ are specifically formulated in the same 10:10:2 ratio found in natural macular pigment (10mg Meso-Zeaxanthin, 10mg Lutein, 2mg Zeaxanthin). These supplements enrich and restore macular pigment to optimum levels with continued use.

MacuHealth

vision edge pro
Introducing Vision Edge PRO, MacuHealth's latest supplement

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

They say life is a game of inches, but it actually comes down to milliseconds. If you can react faster, you’ll perform better – whether you’re a professional athlete or someone who simply wants a safer driving experience. A quicker response time is just one of the visual enhancements that comes with Vision Edge PRO. 

With increased screen time and blue light exposure constantly threatening our sight, a vision supplement must work even harder to protect the eyes from free radicals and inflammation in the retina. Our scientists and researchers asked: How does the best become better?

The answer is omega-3s, specifically DHA and EPA. Fish oil is scientifically proven to work synergistically with macular carotenoids Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin. They enhance bioavailability and boost protection from oxidative stress. With regular use, you’ll see results faster, an essential enhancement for anyone who wants to improve visual performance.

What other enhancements can I see with Vision Edge PRO?

But the synergy between the macular carotenoids and omega-3 fish oil doesn’t stop there. When taken together, these ingredients accumulate rapidly in target tissues like the retina and brain. The higher the levels of these nutrients, the better these vital organs will perform, leading to improved health and performance and less damage over time. If taken daily, the 300 mg of DHA and EPA in Vision Edge PRO provides an equivalent of two servings of fish per week, leading to improved heart health, per the American Heart Association.

With continued use, you’ll typically experience a reduction in eye strain, eye fatigue and reduced frequency of headaches. This leads to improved tolerance to bright stadium lights and sunlight, an increased ability to perceive fine details, quicker response times and better decisions during athletic play and everyday activities.

Vision Edge PRO is proof the best can get better. With carotenoids and omega-3 fish oil working together, the result is an unbeatable combination.

MacuHealth

macular degeneration wet vs dry
Regular eye tests can determine if you could develop macular degeneration (wet vs dry)

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is characterized by the gradual loss of a person’s central vision. It remains the most common reason for vision loss in older adults, with more than 10 million people living with the condition in the U.S.

Central vision is served by a specialized region of the retina called the macula – hence the term macular degeneration. The loss of central vision caused by AMD is a type of retinal degenerative disease because the macula forms part of the retina. However, there are several forms of this disease, two of which are most common:  “dry” AMD and “wet” AMD.

This guide covers what you need to know about macular degeneration, wet vs. dry AMD, symptoms, treatment, and prevention.

Wet vs. Dry Macular Degeneration

Degenerative retinal disease is a term for diseases afflicting the eye’s retina. Approximately 51.26% of people aged 60 to 69 will experience some form of retinal disease, with the rate rising through the age groups.

AMD causes issues with the macula at the retina’s center. Problems with the macula leave you with peripheral vision but disrupted central vision. All forms of AMD cause the cells beneath the macula to degrade.

Let’s discuss wet vs. dry AMD, including symptoms and treatment options.

Wet Macular Degeneration

Wet AMD, also known as exudative AMD, occurs in the late stages of the disease. It’s the least common form of AMD, with 15% of all diagnosed cases being exudative.

Atypical blood vessels will appear around the retina and macula. These blood vessels will begin to leak fats and proteins, which can lead to scarring. Without urgent treatment, bleeding behind the eye in elderly patients can lead to a dramatic and permanent loss of vision.

Symptoms

Wet AMD can cause severe problems with your vision. It is not uncommon for straight lines to appear crooked, wavy, or warped. Some other symptoms of wet AMD include:

  • Blurry areas in your central vision.
  • Blank spots in your vision.
  • Worse vision in dimly lit areas.
  • Less vivid colors.

Treatment

Treatments exist for wet AMD to prevent further vision loss. These treatments are designed to lower the number of irregular blood vessels in the eyes. Note that none of these treatments can reverse any of the damage caused.

There are two approved solutions for wet AMD, including:

  • Anti-VEGF Medication – The purpose of anti-VEGF is to stop the specific protein causing blood vessels to expand and leak into the eye. It is an effective treatment for treating the number of irregular blood vessels within the eye. These medications must be injected into the back of the eye. Depending on the severity, treatment may need to be repeated every few weeks or months.
  • Thermal Laser Photocoagulation – TLP uses lasers to target and destroy the irregular blood vessels in the eye. TLP is reserved for severe wet AMD cases and is usually paired with anti-VEGF medication.

Dry Macular Degeneration

Most people with diagnosed AMD have the dry version. Dry AMD makes up 85-90% of all diagnosed AMD cases. With the early, dry form of AMD, there is less retinal damage and, therefore, less vision loss.

Dry AMD is marked by deposits of clumped debris in the retina called drusen. Waste products from the retina’s cells make up these yellow deposits; drusen can clog the pathways that otherwise would nourish the visual cells in the retina and carry away waste products.

Symptoms

Dry macular degeneration shares many of the same symptoms as wet AMD – it is, therefore, crucial to see an eye care professional annually in order to catch the disease at the earliest possible stage.

Symptoms include blank spots, perceiving straight lines as warped, problems seeing in low lighting, and problematic central vision. However, symptoms vary in severity based on how advanced AMD is.

  • Early Stage – No visual symptoms, but a scheduled dilated eye exam may stumble upon signs of early AMD – namely the presence of drusen.
  • Intermediate Stage – Visual symptoms are usually present, with some distortion, blurriness, and difficulty seeing in low light is the most common.
  • Late Stage – The same symptoms as wet AMD, with a noticeable decline in vision.

Treatment

There are some differences between wet AMD vs. dry AMD treatment. Scientists are exploring potential ways to halt the progression of dry AMD and prevent the onset of later-stage disease. Studies of specific nutrients to support the health of the retina have yielded very promising results. Other studies have characterized some benefits from the use of stem cells and pharmaceutical agents.

In the meantime, preventative steps, such as living a healthy lifestyle, can significantly reduce your risk of dry AMD. Also, the importance of scheduling regular eye exams to catch early problems cannot be overstated. Your eye doctor is an expert at catching subtle changes that may signal a cause for concern. The earlier AMD is caught, the better the outcome.

How to Prevent Wet and Dry Macular Degeneration

Both dry and wet AMD originate from damaged cells underneath the retina. Adopting strategies to protect your eyes can reduce your risk of experiencing AMD. While there is no way to reduce your risk to zero, healthier people are less likely to experience the condition.

Macular degeneration prevention begins with your lifestyle. As spelled out in some detail below, you can take substantial steps today to preserve your vision for the future.

Quit Smoking

Smoking is one of the leading causes of sight problems later in life, as well as a host of other conditions. Quitting smoking as early as possible can prevent further eye damage and produce a regenerative effect on the rest of your body.

Improve Your Diet

Your eyes need proper nutrition for proper health and maintenance. Keep your eyes in good working order by eating a balanced diet filled with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Think about what you eat and incorporate more fruits, vegetables, nuts, and fish oil into your diet. Reducing your greasy, fatty food intake is also helpful.

Take Proper Supplements

Doctors recommend a diet with green vegetables such as kale and spinach. They’re rich in antioxidants known as carotenoids. But modern farming conditions have caused a decrease in the nutritional value of food. Now the average American consumes 1/20th of the recommended amount each day. This isn’t enough to improve visual performance and manage AMD progression.

Thankfully, supplementation is a viable way to replenish macular carotenoids. Studies show that supplements containing all three macular carotenoids – Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin – boost macular pigment; a dense macular pigment layer significantly improves the health and performance of the retina. Taking a high-quality supplement like MacuHealth is an excellent way to ensure that the body receives the proper amount of carotenoids needed to support visual health and performance.

Schedule Regular Eye Appointments

Catching the signs of AMD enables you to take preventative steps.

Dry AMD progresses in stages, meaning that you may not have any symptoms during the early and intermediate stages.

While wet AMD tends to have more profound symptoms, regular eye appointments can help your doctor spot the warning signs.

Early diagnosis can allow you to enjoy healthy vision for longer and take positive steps to slow the onset of this degenerative eye disease.

Preserve Your Vision with MacuHealth

Understanding macular degeneration and wet vs. dry AMD symptoms is essential for taking action to preserve your vision as you age.

MacuHealth’s patented formula is the supplement that doctors choose to improve the health of the retina, leading to better visual performance and protection from AMD.

To learn more about eye vitamins for macular degeneration and how to preserve your vision, shop now with MacuHealth.

MacuHealth

improve hand eye coordination
Want to boost your pickleball game? Read on for tips on how to improve hand-eye coordination

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

Consider all the things that require hand-eye coordination. Everything from driving a car to picking up a ball involves cooperation between your hands, eyes and brain.

Good hand-eye coordination is a pillar of high-performance sports, and it’s natural to see it decline with age. Other factors that can influence this reduction include a poor diet, genetic diseases, and a sedentary lifestyle. However, you can improve hand-eye coordination with regular strengthening exercises that will allow you to maintain your athletic performance long into the future.

8 Easy and Effective Ways to Improve Hand-Eye Coordination

Researchers discovered that integrating specific exercises and movements into your daily routine can improve hand-eye coordination. We’ll explore eight easy and effective ways to strengthen the relationship between your brain, hands and eyes.

Shadowboxing

Shadowboxing is an exercise where you throw punches at an opponent or soft pads. The goal is not to hit hard but to increase your reaction time and improve your hand-eye coordination.

To begin, you aim left with your right hand or aim to the right with your left hand. There is a massive benefit in forcing the brain to cross the midline, the imaginary vertical line splitting you in half from nose to ankle via your belly button.

Another advantage of shadowboxing is it’s an excellent cardio workout. If you want to improve as an athlete, trading cycling or running for shadowboxing is an efficient way to advance on multiple fronts.

Tai Chi

Tai Chi has immense mental and physical health benefits. Adding this ancient martial art to your routine requires only a few minutes daily. Deep breathing and flowing motions improve balance, strength, range of motion and reflexes, with each movement requiring a high degree of eye-hand coordination. 

Play Catch

Playing catch is the simplest way to improve hand-eye coordination. Simply throwing backward and forward forces you to react to an object coming toward you. It’s easy to increase the difficulty: simply increase the speed of the throw or reduce the size of the ball.

Squash

Squash is played by hitting a ball against a wall at speed with yourself or other people. Catching the bounces and darting from side to side for a successful hit requires skill.

Head to the squash court or play it against the side of your house. Overall, it is one of the best options for improving hand-eye coordination.

Juggling

Mastering juggling can improve your coordination by giving you mastery over your peripheral field. When juggling, you’re looking at the point where the balls cross. Meanwhile, your brain is using that information to control your hands.

To add, getting the hang of juggling can be difficult, but starting with two beanbags, moving to three, and then switching to balls allows you to increase the difficulty gradually. You can also stand on a balance board while juggling to challenge yourself further.

Perform Eye Exercises

Basic eye exercises can also help you develop good hand-eye coordination. One of the most straightforward eye exercises is to take two similar objects and place one 18 inches away from you, with the other 10 feet away. Focus on the closer object for a few seconds and switch to the distant object. 

Concentrate on the little details and keep moving back and forth. Quickly changing focus is vital in sports for noticing the opposition and catching passes from your teammates.

Darts

Playing darts is an excellent way to improve your hand-eye coordination. It requires you to look at the dart and the board in front of you. The movement forces your brain to register both at the same time.

Success at darts requires tremendous accuracy. Even the slightest mistake will send your projectile wayward. Practice dart drills at home by picking out smaller and smaller targets on the board until you miss.

Swimming

One of the best exercises to improve hand-eye coordination is swimming. It helps maintain stability, and the repetitive movements as part of this full-body exercise enhance the connection between mind and body.

There is no particular way to get better at eye-hand coordination while swimming. Practice different strokes and swim lengths of the pool. It should be no surprise that doctors recommend swimming for young people and seniors to keep them healthy and maintain their coordination.

Conclusion

To summarize, reaching your potential and performing at a high level requires more than speed and strength. Regular exercises designed to develop your coordination should form part of your daily routine. But it doesn’t stop there. Correct supplementation with high-quality eye vision supplements like MacuHealth gives your eyes the nutrients they need.

MacuHealth

best supplements for golfers
Want to improve your drive? Read on for the best supplements for golfers.

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

What supplements can you use to get better at golf?

Learning what your body needs to perform at its best and how to acquire it is critical to improving at the sport, especially as we understand how nutrition affects how we play the game. The conversation has shifted to BMI, joint flexibility, concentration drills, and selecting the best supplement for visual performance.

To help you hit ’em long and straight, we will cover the most vital supplements for golfers today.

How Can Supplements Help Golfers?

Golf supplements for recovery, physical conditioning, concentration and energy have become a critical component for many athletes’ regiments. Here are a few ways that they can help:

Improve Joint Pain and Mobility

Golf may appear to the average spectator as a low-key sport, but every golfer knows there’s more to it than meets the eye. Although golf does not require sprinting or tackling, you need stamina, accuracy, and hand-eye coordination. Golf swings have plenty of moving parts, and you don’t want them to strain against each other.

Many people use vitamins to help maintain joint health or treat existing pain. They work by lowering inflammation or preserving joint cartilage. And believe it or not, supplements can significantly enhance visual performance too.

Enhance Vision for Game Play

Golf requires great vision, especially if you want to trace your shot down the fairway, see better in bright, glaring sunlight, or read particularly tricky greens. Protecting our golf eyes from potentially hazardous light from the sun is also critical. In addition to the UV rays from sunlight that may injure our sight, blue light hidden in the sun’s rays can adversely affect our vision.

Improve Brain Function and Cognition

Golf is said to be a cerebral sport. While you can perform numerous drills and exercises to improve swing dynamics, depth perception, and your putting stroke, in the end, you’ll need to contend with your mind. It’s vital to pay attention to your concentration levels. Clinical investigations have demonstrated that certain amino acids may be used as brain fuel. They safeguard and enhance the function of brain cells. These amino acids also boost blood flow to the brain, which can help you pay attention for extended periods of time. Acetyl-L-Carnitine is the amino acid you’ll need for this.

7 Supplements for Golfers: What Should You Take?

Do you ever feel your golf swing isn’t as good as you’d like it to be? Is your golf vision not as sharp as you want it? Here are some supplements for golfers that may be beneficial.

Fish Oils

Fish oil is exceptionally beneficial to physical health. It’s one of the most significant sources of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA, which significantly improve vision and brain health. It will also help you increase your strength to drive the ball further and reduce inflammation in your joints so they’re not uncomfortable after a round of golf.

Calcium

A calcium supplement may benefit you with joint discomfort, especially knee pain. While you can obtain calcium through your food, particularly dark green veggies like kale, cabbage, and broccoli, you may not be getting enough in your diet.

Cannabidiol (CBD)

Athletes, particularly golfers, can benefit from CBD. It’s a potent anti-inflammatory, so it can help you play with less pain in your joints, muscles, and ligaments. It can also boost cerebral blood flow, allowing you to focus and concentrate better on your game. It’s also high in omega-3 fatty acids, much like fish oil, so you can gain muscle and keep your joints healthy.

Vitamin D

If you experience joint discomfort, it might be due to a vitamin D deficiency. The symptoms are typical of a vitamin deficiency among golfers. Vitamin D is required for various biological functions, including calcium absorption. It is a vitamin that humans naturally produce when exposed to sunshine. Consider taking a vitamin D and calcium supplement if you require a boost. These may be obtained simply from your pharmacy or supermarket.

Amino Acids

Many golfers are aware of the mental component of the game and how critical it is to your golfing success. It’s crucial to focus while lining up a putt or calculating how hard to swing on a chip shot when you’re 50 yards out from the green. As a result, several professional golfers use amino acids as a supplement. They boost blood flow to your brain, improving your focus and attention span.

Glucosamine

You may strain the cartilage in your joints if you play a lot of golf. Glucosamine is a frequently prescribed vitamin to prevent this from occurring. It can also help to reduce joint inflammation. You’ll need to take the supplement for several months to see the effects.

MacuHealth

While there are sunglasses designed for golfers, these typically only serve as a patch and can alter the edges of your golf eye. If you want to get the most out of your game, you’ll want to increase macular pigment levels in your eyes and brain to improve visual and cognitive function.

MacuHealth improves your vision in low-light, foggy, or high-glare situations while reducing the time it takes to recover from extreme lighting conditions. Order MacuHealth today to give yourself an edge on the course!

MacuHealth

Types of eye floaters
There are several types of eye floaters that can affect your vision.

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

Eye floaters can meddle with your daily activities. Generally, the typical cause is the clumping of collagen fibers inside the vitreous body, the gel-like structure inside the eye. Glycation, a process in which the surface of collagen is oxidized and/or exposed to relatively high sugar levels, is linked as the cause. Subsequently, these clusters cast shadows on the retina and appear as squiggly lines, threadlike strands, cobwebs or rings.

However, there are several different types of eye floaters that we may experience throughout our lifetime. And with proper supplementation and nutrition, the condition is manageable, especially for collagen-based floaters. In order to help patients discern what they’re experiencing, we’ll look at these eye floaters and indicate which ones are manageable.

Embryonic Remnants

These types of eye floaters can form around the tenth week of pregnancy and occur when the hyaloid artery, which provides the eye with nutrients in the womb, pulls away from the lens. The process occasionally causes “debris” and is seen as floaters. These aren’t pieces of collagen from the vitreous but rather bits of the hyaloid artery and are not manageable with nutrition.

Asteroid Hyalosis

These types of eye floaters appear as white opacities in the vitreous, or stars shining in the night sky, and move around like typical floaters. They’re associated with age and are composed of calcium soaps, not collagen, and are not manageable with nutrition. Their cause is unknown.

Posterior Vitreous Detachment (PVD)

Floaters brought on by posterior vitreous detachment occur when the vitreous body physically pulls away from the posterior pole of the retina.  This process causes relatively large, collagen-based floaters to detach and release into the vitreous humor. 

What types of eye floaters can be managed?

The Floater Intervention Study (FLIES)1 showed that when the vitreous receives a continuous supply of antioxidant and enzymatic nutrients, the results showed a significant reduction in collagen-based floaters. These types of eye floaters are posterior vitreous detachment and glycation based.

The trusted scientists behind MacuHealth offer this patented nutrient blend under the name of VitreousHealth. It can be found online and through eye care professionals.

References

  1. Ankamah et al. 2021. doi.org/10.1167/tvst.10.12.19

MacuHealth

macular degeneration causes
One way to find age-related macular degeneration causes is regular visits to your eye care professional.

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

Currently, there is no cure for age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The eye disease affects over 11 million people and is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States. But research shows that there are ways to prevent and manage the symptoms of this progressive eye disease.

Before we learn how to address and manage AMD, it’s vital to know its causes. And while the disease affects those over the age of 50, there are steps anyone at any age can take to avoid any possible future vision loss. We’ll look at macular degeneration causes and what steps you can take to manage this condition.

Dry Macular Degeneration Causes

According to WebMD, 85 to 90% of people with AMD have the early or “dry” form. When your eyecare professional conducts a dilated eye exam, they’re looking for drusen, which are accumulations of cholesterol and protein that collect under the retina. These small collections can limit typical eye operations. Researchers believe these clusters are caused by an inability of the retina to clean itself over time.

The existence of some drusen is normal and generally harmless. But as you age, drusen become harder and collects in the macula, which mediates central vision. As it accumulates, these particles keep oxygen and other vital nutrients from reaching your retina. You’ll notice a slow visual decline and, if left untreated, can progress to the more severe form of the disease, known as “wet” AMD. In this stage, small blood vessels in the eye begin to break and leak fluid beneath the retina.

Wet Macular Degeneration Causes

According to most researchers, drusen are also a wet macular degeneration cause. It happens when new blood vessels grow underneath the macula in an attempt to bring oxygen and nutrients to starved tissue. Unfortunately, these new vessels can break and begin to leak blood and other fluid into the eye, causing damage to your vision.

What Puts You at Risk For Macular Degeneration?

Researchers have determined several conditions and behaviors that can increase your chance of developing AMD. You’ll notice that some of these behaviors are habits you can stop or change.

Age. The disease is called age-related macular degeneration for a reason. According to WebMD, 2% of people in their 50s have AMD. Almost a third of people over the age of 75 do.

Family history of AMD. Researchers have discovered several genes linked to the disease. If someone in your family has had AMD, there’s a risk you could develop it as you grow older.

Race and ethnicity. Statistics show that Caucasians have the highest risk of developing AMD, with Chinese and Hispanic/Latinos following behind. African Americans are the least likely to have the disease.

Gender. Women live longer than men, which is why scientists believe two-thirds of those with AMD are female.

Smoking. Cigarette smoking is a macular degeneration cause that is preventable. Tobacco use reduces the amount of oxygen that reaches your eyes and produces an extremely high level of oxidative stress in the body. These factors can lead to the development of the disease.

Heart disease. A history of heart disease or high cholesterol could raise your risk of developing AMD.

Weight and diet. Some studies indicate that having a body mass index of over 30 can double your chances of getting AMD. And don’t forget that a vegetable-rich diet can decrease your chances of developing the disease.

What’s the Solution?

The most important thing you can do to prevent AMD is to see an optometrist regularly for an exam. Your eye care professional can offer sound strategies to help navigate your situation. And as shown above, quitting smoking, along with vigorous exercise and a balanced diet, go a long way in preventing and managing the disease’s symptoms.

Additionally, supplementation with nutrients known as carotenoids – specifically Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin – can reduce the risk of developing AMD. Also, they can improve their visual performance. MacuHealth includes all three of the carotenoids that make up the macular pigment. The supplement is scientifically proven to protect the eye from damage, rebuild macular pigment and manage the symptoms of AMD.

MacuHealth

macular degeneration treatments
There are numerous macular degeneration treatments to help you manage the disease.

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

 

It can be terrifying and confusing when you’re diagnosed with age-related macular degeneration (AMD). But this doesn’t have to lead to a decline in your quality of life. Most people with AMD have the less severe dry form of the disease. Patients can still read, drive their car and run errands just as they did before being diagnosed. The late, or “wet,” stage accounts for approximately 10 percent of cases but causes legal blindness in 90 percent of disease sufferers.

While there isn’t a cure, researchers are developing new therapies to help patients manage AMD symptoms. These include ocular injections that can slow vision loss and supplements with crucial nutrients that feed the eye. These nutrients are three macular carotenoids – Lutein, Zeaxanthin and Meso-Zeaxanthin – that rebuild macular pigment, the part of the retina responsible for central vision. We’ll look at some macular degeneration treatments that can help manage the disease.

In-Office Macular Degeneration Treatments

Here are some extensive and invasive macular degeneration treatments your eye care professional may recommend if you’ve progressed to the wet stage of AMD. This stage occurs when new blood vessels grow underneath the macula, the part of the retina that facilitates central vision, causing fluid or blood to leak into your eye and obstruct your line of sight.

Injections

Doctors typically inject Avastin or other anti-angiogenic drugs into a patient’s eye to block the growth of blood vessels. Then this macular degeneration treatment must be performed regularly, usually every month, to maintain vision levels.

Laser Therapy

Your doctor will shine a powerful light into your eye to destroy any irregularly growing blood vessels in the retina. Additionally, a similar macular degeneration treatment utilizes a drug the doctor injects into the bloodstream. When the laser is shined into the eye, the drug is activated, leading to the blockage of abnormally growing blood vessels.

Vision Aids

Doctors can insert a device into the eye called an implantable miniature telescope. Once inside, it magnifies and enhances the sight of those with advanced AMD.

Supplements and AMD Prevention

The best way to prevent and manage AMD symptoms is to visit your eye doctor regularly. This is especially important if you have a history of vision issues in your family. In addition to a typical eye exam, your optometrist will check for the disease by having you look at an Amsler grid. It is a series of straight horizontal and vertical lines. If any of the lines appear wavy, this is a sign that you’re developing AMD.

Another easy way to help prevent and manage the disease is to wear sunglasses. And if you’re a smoker, stop. Doctors also recommend a diet with green vegetables such as kale and spinach. They’re rich in antioxidants known as carotenoids. These nutrients replenish macular pigment, which absorbs dangerous blue light and blocks free radicals.

But modern farming conditions have caused a decrease in the nutritional value of food. Now the average American consumes 1/20th of the recommended amount each day.1  This isn’t enough to improve visual performance and manage AMD progression. Thankfully, supplementation is a viable way to replenish macular carotenoids.

Studies show that supplements containing all three macular carotenoids boost macular pigment. Consistent, daily use of high-quality supplements like MacuHealth is an excellent way to ensure that the body receives the proper amount of carotenoids needed to support visual health and performance.

References

  1. Johnson et al. 2010. doi: 10.1016/j.jada.2010.06.009.

MacuHealth

What are EPA and DHA
What are EPA and DHA? Read on!

Written by MacuHealth
Reviewed by Jim Stringham, Ph.D.

Omega-3 supplements are becoming more popular, especially those utilizing fish oil as an ingredient. Healthcare providers and optometrists are recommending patients increase their intake of this ingredient. According to recent studies, these polyunsaturated fatty acids are considered “good fats” because of their numerous benefits to the heart, brain and eyes. Yet many Americans fall short of the recommended intake of Omega-3s.

But when patients go to their local pharmacy or healthcare store, they see countless fish oil supplements on their shelves with many different formulas and price points. They’re confused about which one to choose. Many questions come to mind, such as: “What are EPA and DHA?” and “Which formula is the best?”

To help consumers make the best decision based on their health needs, we’ll look at the importance of certain ingredients in Omega-3 fish oil.

What to look for on an Omega-3 supplement label?

You might need to learn a whole new alphabet when looking at the label of a fish oil supplement. Be sure to check the letters in the active ingredients. You’ll find that many lower-cost bottles feature an Omega-6 called gamma-Linolenic acid, or GLA.

GLA can produce good results for the body as it has some anti-inflammatory properties. But it can also have potentially unhealthy consequences. The body can convert GLA into arachidonic acid, or ARA, which tends to be inflammatory. And because this ingredient is in poultry, eggs and red meat, Americans potentially have too much ARA in their diet. That can cause more inflammation, not less, leading to pain and swelling.

One more thing to look for when shopping for a high-quality fish oil product is if the base formulation is “re-esterified triglyceride” (rTG) or “ethyl ester” (EE). Re-esterified triglyceride is natural, recognized by the body and has high bioavailability. Ethyl ester is cheaper and easier to produce. But it has ethanol as its backbone, leading to health problems and lower bioavailability.

Then what letters should you be looking for on a fish oil supplement label? When it comes to reducing inflammation and dry eye symptoms, the research shows that EPA and DHA are the best. But what are EPA and DHA? We’ll explore what sets them apart from GLA below.

What are EPA and DHA?

According to SFGate.com, EPA and DHA are long-chain polyunsaturated fats with 14 or more carbons that have numerous health benefits. For example, your doctor may prescribe a steroid because of its anti-inflammatory properties. However, these drugs have serious side effects, including stomach pain, indigestion and an increased appetite. But the secret power of EPA is its ability to act like a steroid without the nasty side effects. EPA inhibits the enzyme that produces ARA, which can cause inflammation on the cellular level. 

It can be said that the more EPA you have in your system, the less harmful inflammation you’ll have in your body. It can ease the symptoms of arthritis, inflammatory bowel syndrome and other autoimmune disorders. EPA can also decrease the risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, depression, cancer and other diseases. 

DHA also has benefits for the brain and eyes and is critical to neural performance. It increases the speed of nerve signals, enhancing visual and cognitive performance and leading to improved reaction time, contrast sensitivity, and accuracy. And when EPA and DHA work together, it provides optimal benefits to the body.

Conclusion

We’ve answered the question: What are EPA and DHA? And despite the scientific evidence proving the importance of omega-3s to our vision and overall health, getting them into our diet is difficult. The body only receives these essential fatty acids through food such as fish, shellfish, algae or supplementation.

Taking a pharmaceutical-grade fish oil supplement delivers a safe and proven way to boost our vision, brain, and heart function. Because of evidence showing the benefits of taking EPA and DHA, MacuHealth developed TG Omega-3 Fish Oil to help patients meet current health demands.

TG Omega-3 is a natural re-esterified triglyceride formulation that is purified up to five times to eliminate toxins, impurities and fishy taste. TG Omega-3 offers 2,200 mg of EPA and DHA combined per serving. Next time you shop for fish oil, check the label to see if it has the correct formulation to give your body the boost it needs.