Zeaxanthin like lutein is a carotenoid found in highest concentration in the macular region of the eyes. These carotenoids help filter out damaging blue light and prevent free radical damage to the delicate structures in the back of the eye. Zeaxanthin may prevent age-related macular degeneration (ARMD); help prevent glaucoma and cataracts; support normal eye health; and is a powerful antioxidant. Current research with zeaxanthin includes treatment of HIV and cardiovascular disease.
A recent human study from the Medical Research Council Environmental Epidemiology Unit, University of Southampton, found that “Low blood level of zeaxanthin -- not lutein, is significantly associated with the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration.” A high macular pigment density helps to retain visual sensitivity with aging. Increased intake of dietary zeaxanthin can increase macular pigment. Zeaxanthin is the dominant component in the center of the macula, while lutein dominates at the outer edges. And high dietary intake of lutein-rich fruits and vegetables has been associated with a significant reduction in macular degeneration – the leading cause of blindness in Americans over the age of 65.
Dietary Sources: Egg yolks, yellow fruits and vegetables as well as in dark green, leafy vegetables: broccoli, spinach, kale and collard greens.
Dosage: Common dosages range from 5 to 10 mg.
Side Effects: There are no known adverse side effects associated with dietary supplements containing zeaxanthin when used at recommended levels.
Zeaxanthin research shows the following:
1. Protects against carcinogens
2. Prevents age related macular degeneration
3. Improves eye function
4. Reduces aging of lens
5. May prevent cataracts
6. May reduce risk of lung cancer
7. May reduce risk of chronic disease
8. May reduce risk of death from HIV
9. May reduce risk of congestive heart failure
10. Reduces hypercholesterolemia
11. Decreases homocysteine levels
12. Those with Alzheimer’s disease have low levels of zeaxanthin
Zeaxanthin Abstracts (32)