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Prevention of cataracts

A new study provides further evidence that nutrient antioxidants play a role in the prevention of cataracts.

Researchers from Tufts University studied more than 575 women ages 53 to 77 from the Nurses' Health Study. The women did not have diabetes nor did they have previously diagnosed cataracts. During a 15-year period, the women answered questionnaires about their food intake.// They were also questioned on whether they took vitamin supplements and were given eye examinations during the study.// Researchers specifically looked for the development of cataracts. A cataract is a condition in which the lens loses its clearness and often occurs late in life.

Researchers found the prevalence of cataracts was significantly lower in the group who ate the most amount of nutrients than the group who ate the lowest amount. The nutrients studied included vitamin C, vitamin E, riboflavin, folate, carotene and lutein/zeaxanthin. Researchers say after they adjusted for other nutrients, only vitamin C intake remained associated with prevalence of cataracts. Researchers found the incidence of cataracts was significantly lower for women who used a vitamin C supplement for 10 or more years compared to women who never used vitamin C supplements.

Researchers say these results provide further proof that antioxidant nutrients play a role in the prevention of age-related eye disorders.

Source: Archives of Ophthalmology

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