Saffron Helps Macular Degeneration in Antioxidant Study

saffronTaking saffron pills improved the visual acuity of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) patients in a small study. Macular degeneration is the gradual deterioration of the small, yellow-colored part of the eye near the center of the retina.

Saffron contains carotenoids called crocin and crocetin. These antioxidants have been shown to have a protective effect on retinal cells. Continue reading

Myopia: The Inside Story & New Treatment Options

myopia in school childMyopia, also called “nearsightedness,” is a common eye condition that requires correction with eye glasses. If severe, it can lead to serious eye conditions. Myopia is a refractive error in which close objects are clear, but distant objects are blurry. This is because the refracted image is in focus in front of the retina. Typically, the myopic eye is elongated; however, myopia can also be caused by a distorted cornea.

This disorder affects around 33% of the population of the United States. In some East Asian countries, over 90% of the population is myopic.[1] It is typically detected in children Continue reading

Scientist Uncover Dark Circles’ Secrets

dark circles under eyesDark circles under the eyes can make you  feel like you look tired or old.  They are a major cosmetic concern for both men and women, although women seem to feel the weight of the problem. They are a difficult issue to address because they are caused by a variety of conditions – some of which do not respond well to treatment, diet or lifestyle factors.

Scientists can measure skin color in order to accurately determine degree of changes using a spectral imaging camera that detects skin chromophores – the parts of molecules that determine its color.  This improvement on contact-type spectrophotometers allows better evaluation of skin color. Continue reading

Avoid Eye Injections for Macular Degeneration with Encapsulated Cell Therapy (ECT)

new implantClinical trials are underway for an implantable device that delivers medication directly to the eyes of people with age-related macular degeneration. Current treatment involves eye injections every four-to-eight weeks, which is difficult to comply with and can create complications. The new technology is a tiny device that is put into the eye and lasts up to 2 years, reducing or eliminating the need for the injections. The devices are being developed by Cumberland, Rhode Island-based Neurotech. Continue reading

Rod Opsin Human Protein May Restore Vision for Retinitis Pigmentosa Patients

key to vision restorationExperiments on mice show promise for a treatment that expresses a light-sensitive human protein, called rod opsin, on the undamaged retinal cells. These cells are turned into photoreceptors, which allow vision.

Retinitis pigmentosa is a group of eye disorders that appear to be genetic. This eye disease is a major cause of vision loss and blindness. Continue reading

Genetic Variant and Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Macular Degeneration

scientific researchWomen with specific genes may be more likely to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD) if they are deficient in Vitamin D, according to new research in JAMA Ophthalmology.

The genetic variant (Y402H) studied is the complement factor H gene, called CFH for short. The genes in question are related to the immune system. The development of macular degeneration is believed to involve inflammation. In AMD, drusen, lipids (fats) and proteins build up in the eye. The body perceives the drusen to be an invader and attacks it. The genes appear to cause a stronger immune response. Continue reading

MSM Fights More Than Inflammation

msm eye dropsMethylsulfonylmethane, known as MSM, is commonly utilized in the form of MSM eyedrops or powder in vcaps to be taken as a supplement.  It is well known for its anti-inflammatory capacity, documented by researchers.  Scientists are documenting substantiating research and finding new uses.


MSM inhibits inflammasomes, which are protein formations that stimulate production of  lymphocytes (white blood cells).  It also inhibits the activity of ‘pro-cytokines’ which promote inflammation throughout the body, creating health-damaging fevers and causing tissue death and shock.1 This effect of MSM is useful in reducing the tissue swelling that damages the optic nerve, causes eye soreness of dry eyes and Sjogrens syndrome and other inflammatory-related conditions.

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Eyebright Fights Microbes and Inflammation

eyebrightEuropean researchers have been looking at what makes eyebright tick and why it has long been regarded in traditional folk medicine as a helpful herb for eye conditions.  Turns out that eyebright supports more than eye health.  Wikipedia describes eyebright as having  possible benefits not only for blepharitis and conjunctivitis, but for eye strain, colds and sinus infections, allergies and hay fever and sore throats and coughs.

Anti-Microbial Action

Eyebright has anti-microbial action and is more effective in concentrations of at least 512 micrograms per milliliter against a number of nasty microbes associated with eye infections.

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Glaucoma Linked to Mercury in the Body

mercuryA new study has found that higher levels of mercury in the blood are linked to a greater chance of developing the eye disease glaucoma. Additionally, low levels of manganese (a chemical element) were associated with lower incidence of glaucoma.

This cross-sectional population-based study was published online on August 6th 2015 in JAMA Ophthalmology. The researchers looked a blood or urine metallic element levels, as well as eye disease in 2,680 Korean adults.

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Benefits of Maritime Pine Bark Extract

pine barkThe effects of extracts of French Maritime pine bark (Pinus pinaster bark extract) have been reviewed in the journal, Research in Pharmaceutical Sciences.  The writers explain the damaging role of free radicals which arise from oxidative processes within the body as well as the damage resulting from inflammation and that many studies have demonstrated that such damage can be prevented or limited.

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