Vitamin C can Help Prevent Cataract
A recent study published online in the journal March 23 states, healthy Vitamin C Amount Might Prevent Cataract. While we cannot totally avoid developing cataracts, we may be able to delay their onset and keep them from worsening significantly by eating a diet rich in vitamin C," study lead researcher Dr. Christopher Hammond said in a news release from the journal Ophthalmology.
The new study included more than 1,000 pairs of 60-year-old British female twins. The researchers found that those who took in high amounts of vitamin C in their diet had a one-third lower risk of cataract over 10 years. However, the investigators were clear that Getting vitamin C via a supplement did not appear to reduce the risk.
Vitamin C's strength as an
antioxidant may explain how it reduces the risk of cataract
progression. The fluid inside the eye is normally high in vitamin C,
which helps prevent oxidation that leads to clouding of the eye
lens. A vitamin C-rich diet may boost the amount of the vitamin in
the eye fluid, providing extra protection against cataract.
Modern science is now eagerly embracing vitamin C's enormous potential as an antioxidant capable of preventing and, in some cases, reversing a host of human ills.
Cataract & Role of Vitamin C
Cataract is a dysfunction of the lens resulting from
opacification, which impedes the transmission of light. About 98% of
the solid mass of the lens is protein, predominantly crystallins.
These proteins are long lived and undergo minimal turnover; as a
result, cataract formation is primarily age related. Oxidation of
the lens proteins as a result of chronic exposure to ultraviolet
light and oxygen has been implicated in this process.
Smoking, which is known to produce oxidative stress, is also
associated with enhanced cataract risk. Evidence of lens protein
oxidation includes loss of sulfhydryl and tryptophan residues with
age as well as formation of disulfides and other covalent
cross-linkages. Deamination and acidification also occur, as well as
formation of advanced glycation end products, particularly in
persons with diabetes. The oxidized proteins accumulate, aggregate,
and eventually precipitate, producing the sequelae of cataract.
The lens contains multiple antioxidant defenses, such as high concentrations of vitamin C and glutathione, and antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase, catalase, and the glutathione peroxidase-reductase system. Secondary defenses include proteolytic enzymes that selectively degrade damaged proteins. With aging, however, antioxidant concentrations in the lens, including concentrations of vitamin C, may be reduced and the antioxidant enzymes are prone to inactivation, resulting in increased protein oxidation in older lenses. Proteolytic activity is also reduced in older lenses, resulting in accumulation of damaged proteins. Therefore, supplementation with antioxidants such as vitamin C may reduce the risk of cataract.
Vitamin C Sources
The current recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for vitamin C for adult nonsmoking men and women is 60 mg/d, which is based on a mean requirement of 46 mg/d to prevent the deficiency disease scurvy.
Strive to eat nine servings of fruits and vegetables daily, because you will get a healthy dose of vitamin C along with an abundance of other vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that are good for disease prevention and overall health.
Here are all the foods and beverages you'd need to consume to reach 500 milligrams (mg):
- Cantaloupe, 1 cup (8 ounces): 59mg
- Orange juice, 1 cup: 97mg
- Broccoli, cooked, 1 cup: 74mg
- Red cabbage, 1/2 cup: 40mg
- Green pepper, 1/2 cup, 60mg
- Red pepper, 1/2 cup, 95mg
- Kiwi, 1 medium: 70mg
- Tomato juice, 1 cup: 45mg.
This study confirms that a well-balanced diet that includes foods that give us a boost of antioxidants is critical to preventing damage and the aging of our eyes.