You may have seen or heard about lutein.  How about Zeaxanthin?

What exactly are Lutein and Zeaxanthin?

Lutein and zeaxanthin are two types of carotenoids, which are yellow to red pigments found in vegetables and other plants.  They are both powerful antioxidants that can protect your eyes and maintain healthy vision.

Lutein is a powerful antioxidant found in many vegetables.  Lutein, along with Zeaxanthin, are already found naturally in your eyes, and they help protect your eyes from harmful high-energy light, such as ultraviolet rays.

In plants, lutein and zeaxanthin absorb excess light energy to prevent damage from too much sunlight, especially from high-energy blue light rays.

Studies also suggest that a high level of lutein and zeaxanthin promotes better vision, especially in dim light.

Where can you get more Lutein and Zeaxanthin?

One scientific study discovered that subjects who ate foods high in zeaxanthin, may be half as likely to get cataracts.  Zeaxanthin is found in green vegetables, such as spinach, kale, and broccoli.

You can also take lutein and zeaxanthin supplements.  Keep in mind that these antioxidants work better in tandem with other vitamins and nutrients, such as vitamins C and E.  A blend of nutrients is more effective than supplements on their own.

Foods with Lutein and Zeaxanthin


Lutein and Zeaxanthin

  • Found in many vegetables, including kale, spinach, collard greens, turnip greens, corn, broccoli
  • Other great sources are garden cress, summer squash, sweet corn, eggs, oranges, and papayas
  • Along with other antioxidants, like vitamins C and E, lutein and zeaxanthin guard your body from damaging effects of free radicals
  • Lutein may also help protect against atherosclerosis, build-up of fatty deposits in arteries (causes heart attacks)
  • Helps to block harmful blue light and ultraviolet rays
  • Helps to reduce oxidative damage that leads to macular degeneration
  • Lowers risk of cataracts
  • Can help lower diabetes risk

To protect your eyes from the harmful effects of blue light and UV rays, be sure to include lutein and zeaxanthin to your diet.  These amazing antioxidants can help prevent age-related macular degeneration or slow the progression of the disease.  You can obtain these nutrients from consuming green leafy vegetables and yellow vegetables.

To learn more about how to take proper care of your eyes, consult one of our doctors at Primary Eyecare.

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