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March, 2013

Oral DHA in the Prevention of Exudative AMD: The Nutritional AMD Treatment 2 Study

A random, double-blind research study examine the efficacy of oral supplements with DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) in preventing wet (exudative) age-related macular degeneration. The subjects were aged of 55-85 years and had early lesions of age-related neovasularization and maculopathy.

They were given 840mg/day of DHA and 270 mg/day of EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), or a placebo consisting of capsules containing olive oil for 3 years. The researchers found that choroidal neovascularization (CNV) incidence was significantly reduced in DHA-supplemented patients who maintained a high index of EPA plus DHA over three years.

Study: Souied EH, Delcourt C, Querques G, et al. Oral docosahexaenoic acid in the prevention of exudative age-related macular degeneration: The Nutritional AMD Treatment 2 Study. Ophthalmology. 2013; Feb 7.

Flavonoids in Deeply Colored Berries Provide Protection from Disease

Deeply colored fruits are filled with flavonoids and other antioxidants that help protect the body from disease. Antioxidants help prevent damage from free-radicals, which is believed to be responsible for the onset of eye diseases such as cataracts and macular degeneration.

A study in the journal Circulation suggested that anthocyanins from berries help open the arterial wall and lessen the buildup of plaque. Their antioxidant effect inhibits damage to the cells. They also help prevent breast, prostate and lung cancer.

"The general hypothesis is that aging and chronic disease may result from oxidative stress or inflammation over a person's lifetime," said Steven Schwartz, director at the Center for Functional Food Research and Entrepreneurship.

People of all ages could benefit from adding as much as three servings of berries per day to reduce the deleterious effects of free radical damage.

Study: High Anthocyanin Intake Is Associated With a Reduced Risk of Myocardial Infarction in Young and Middle-Aged Women by Cassidy et. al. Circulation. 2013; 127: 188-196 doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.112.122408ni

Editor's Note: Blueberries and bilberries have long been known to help support strong night vision and overall eye health. Dr. Grossman's Advanced Eye and Vision Support Formula contains both types of berries, plus a wide range of other antioxidants for eye health.

Lactulose After a Stroke May Reduce Brain Damage

According to a 2012 study simply a drink of water laced with hydrogen gas might help prevent or limit damage to the brain due to a stroke. The gas appears to protect brain cells from the after-effects of oxygen starvation perhaps by reacting with / disabling toxic oxygen effects after the stroke.

At present, there are no signs of hydrogen gas being toxic to humans. This research also suggests that this could be used as to help prevent strokes.

Study: Lactulose: an effective preventive and therapeutic option for ischemic stroke by production of hydrogen by Chen Et. Al. Medical Gas Research 2012, 2:3

Dose Size of Sleeping Pill Ambien Lowered Due to Side Effects

The FDA has recommended that Ambien (zolpidem) doses be lowered when used as a sleeping pill, especially for women, due to negative side-effects. Ambien stays in women's systems much longer than in men's. There have been many reports of accidents the day after taking Ambien which has led the FDA cut the recommended dose for women in half, and re-consider the men's dose size.

In contrast to the glowing reports from television advertising, the reality is that Ambien can have significant side-effects. However, natural alternatives to sleeping pills are within easy reach.

Eating a diet rich in magnesium has been associated with better sleep, according to a study at the Human Nutrition Research Center in ND. Research has shown that avoiding the "swing shift," going to bed at the same time every night, following a settling bed-time ritual, avoiding electronics before bed, getting sufficient exercise during the day, avoiding evening exercise, and using the bed only for sex and sleeping can help insomnia.

FDA Approves Retinitis Pigmentosa Prosthesis

An implanted device for adult patients who have retinitis pigmentosa has received FDA approval. The Argus II Retinal Prosthesis System includes a tiny video camera, a transmitter (on a pair of glasses), and a video processing unit. The patient's retina is replaced with a prosthesis. The camera wirelessly transmits visual information to the retinal prosthesis to improve vision.

This device is a 'last resort' treatment for patients who have completely lost their vision. While full vision is not restored, it can help adults with advanced retinitis pigmentosa perceive shapes, detect light and dark and track movement. More than $100 million in grant money funded this research.

At NaturalEyeCare we feel that everyone can try to maintain and improve healthy vision through a life-long program of good nutrition, targeted supplementation, exercise and eye exercises. Significant research supports the value of a healthy lifestyle and supplementation in restoring and maintaining vision health, and delaying or slowing the progress of eye disease. See our recommendations for retinal / photo receptor support.