Retinal and macular support. This antioxidant can be helpful in macular degeneration and boosting immune function.


Zeaxanthin is the yellow pigment found in paprika, corn, saffron, and marigolds. It is one of the two most important carotenoids in the retina - while lutein is found mostly in the edge of the retina, zeaxanthin is predominant in the central macula. Thus it is extremely important in fighting macular conditions such as macular degeneration and maintaining healthy vision.

Retinal pigment. One of zeaxanthin's benefits to macular degeneration is because it is a retinal pigment and as such acts as a filter for damaging radiation. The zeaxanthin that comes from red and orange foods in the diet (e.g. peppers, saffron) makes a greater contribution to macular pigment density than that which comes from green leafy vegetables.4 A number of studies found that a high intake of zeaxanthin lowers the risk of dry AMD advancing to the more serious form, wet AMD.5 It does so by increasing the density of the macular pigment that protects the retina from damaging solar radiation.6 One study focused on zeaxanthin alone, and found that zeaxanthin is more effective than lutein in protecting against oxidative stress from ultraviolet light exposure.7 Another study found that zeaxanthin improves vision in elderly patients with early macular degeneration, according to both eye charts and reports of better night vision.8

Glare recovery. One of the diagnostic tests for macular problems (to differentiate from optic nerve problems) is the glare recovery test in which the subject is exposed to bright light, such as the eye doctor's ophthalmoscope, and then measured how long it takes for visual acuity to return. Zeaxanthin, lutein, and meso-zeaxanthin make up most of the macular pigment which is essential to good glare recovery.5

Biomarker role. In 2016 researchers identified zeaxanthin an excellent biomarker (biomarkers are biochemicals in the body useful in diagnosis) in observing women's dietary intake. Zeaxanthin blood levels indicate the degree to which it is actually being absorbed by the body and being used by cell tissue.1

Cancer. Zeaxanthin is also one of the carotenoids identified as having a possible benefit role in preventing cancers such as non-Hodgkin lymphoma.2

Stem cell support. Researchers demonstrated that pre-treatment with zeaxanthin was helpful in supporting transplanted stem cells.3

See food sources for zeaxanthin.

Dr. Grossman has formulated the Advanced Vision Care Formula which contains zeaxanthin:

  • The formulation has therapeutic levels of zeaxanthin made from pure marigold rather than synthetic sources. Zeaxanthin is considered by experts to be the most important carotenoid antioxidant for eye protection.*

    Its the most needed by the eye but the least available in the diet (which provides only about 180 mcg/day. Our master formula contains a whopping 6 mg per Vcap for maximum eye protection, and protection during injury or illness.

    * Caution: Many eye products don't even contain zeaxanthin at all or skimp on it as it is very expensive, including adding a token amount often listed in micrograms (mcg) such as 800mcg or less, and often it is synthetic.
  • We use South American Zeaxanthin made from pesticide-free South American marigold
  • Studies recommend 4 mg/day total (both zeaxanthin and lutein) to prevent AMD (Age-related Macular Degeneration) and cataracts
  • Combined with lutein, helps effectively reduce free radicals

Zeaxanthin News

Want to learn more? See our blog for news on zeaxanthin.


1. Lampe JL, et al, Dietary biomarker evaluation in a controlled feeding study in women from the Women's Health Initiative cohort, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, December, 2016 Dec.
2. Chen F, et al, Carotenoid intake and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma: a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of observational studies, Annals of Hemotology, December, 2016.
3. Liu Y, et al, Precise Regulation of miR-210 is Critical for the Cellular Homeostasis Maintenance and Transplantation Efficacy Enhancement of Mesenchymal Stem Cell in Acute Liver Failure Therapy, Cell Transplantation, December, 2016.
4. Estevez-Santiago R, et al, Lutein and zeaxanthin supplied by red/orange foods and fruits are more closely associated with macular pigment optical density than those from green vegetables in Spanish subjects, Nutrition Research, November, 2016.
5. Stringham JM, et al, Macular carotenoid supplementation improves disability glare performance and dynamics of photostress recovery, Eye and Vision, November, 2016.
6. Richer, S.P., Stiles, W., Graham-Hoffman, K., Levin, M., Ruskin, D., et al. (2011). Randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of zeaxanthin and visual function in patients with atrophic age-related macular degeneration: the Zeaxanthin and Visual Function Study (ZVF) FDA IND #78, 973. Optometry, Nov;82(11):667-680.e6.
7. Ibid. Richer. (2011).
8. Delcourt, C., Carriere, I., Delage, M., Barberger-Gateau, P., Schalch, W., et al. (2006). Plasma Lutein and Zeaxanthin and Other Carotenoids as Modifiable Risk factors for Age Related Maculopathy and Cataract: the POLA study. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci, Jun;47(6):2329-35.
9. Ibid. Richer. (2011).