Research in the last few years has shown the importance of a good diet in reducing the risk of macular degeneration. Pigmented vegetables such as spinach, kale, brochili containing nutrients such as lutein and Zeaxanthin are excellent. But new research according to Austrlian nutristionist Dr Rosemary Stanton shows reducing waist size can reduce acute macular degeneration between 39 to 59%.
According to the latest research papers there is approximately a 47% increased risk of smokers developing early onset macular degeneration. Using the retinal camera at the practice in Fremantle we are seeing plenty of evidence of smoking damage.
In the photo opposite, the yellow spots (drusen) are typical of smoking damage. I regularily see early evidence of this damage in people in their thirties and sometimes, even in their twenties.
12 year olds who spent more time indoors, on computers or watching television are more likely to develop myopia (shortsighted- good near, poor far vision) according to Sydney Myopia Study. On the other children who had higher levels of outdoor activity were associated with lower myopia levels and better distance vision. The leader of the study Dr Katherine Rose, suggested light intensity and its effect on the growth of the eye as important factors. The study was published by the American Acemedy of Ophthalmology in its journal “Ophthalmology”.
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David Shanahan © 2009