A dry eye study, shows that a group using GLA showed a significant improvement in the specific symptom of “dryness” at 3 and 6 months (p <0.01) as well as significant improvement in overall lens comfort at 6 months (p<0.01). Tear meniscus height was increased in the GLA group at 6 months relative to baseline (p<0.01), although all other objective signs were unchanged
GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) is an omega-6 unsaturated fatty acid made in the human body from linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid found in vegetable oils and egg yolks. GLA has anti-inflammatory properties and can also be found in oils derived from black currant seeds and the evening primrose plant.
Several small trials testing GLA and linoleic (LA) oil in dry eye syndrome with an inflammatory component report reduced ocular surface inflammation and symptom improvement.
1. Barabino, M et al. Systemic linoleic and gamma-linolenic acid therapy in dry eye syndrome with an inflammatory component. Cornea 22:97101, 2003.
2. Aragona P, et al. Systemic omega-6 essential fatty acid treatment and PGE1 tear content in Sjogren’s syndrome patients. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 46:44749, 2005
3. Kokke KH, et al. Oral omega-6 essential fatty acid treatment in contact lens associated dry eye. Contact Lens Anterior Eye 31:141-6, 2008.
4. Macri A, et al. Effect of linoleic acid and gamma-linolenic acid on tear production, tear clearance and on the ocular surface after photorefractive keratectomy. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol 241: 561-6, 2003.
For more information on dry eyes and natural ways this eye condition can be helped, go to Natural Eye Care
Eye Conditions section and click on Dry Eyes.