Monday, August 20, 2007

Can You Maintain Vision by Eating Fruit?

When we were growing up, many of us heard that carrots are good for our eyes. My mom would get my attention by asking a well known question: “Well, have you ever seen a rabbit wearing glasses?”

Carrots are certainly a potent whole food with many wonderful health benefits but the latest research indicates that fruit is even more important for the nutritional support of your eyes and vision. A recent study published in the June 2004 issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology indicates that eating 3 or more servings of fruit per day may lower your risk of age-related macular degeneration (ARMD), the primary cause of vision loss in older adults, by 36%, compared to persons who consume less than 1.5 servings of fruit daily.

In this study, which involved over 70,000 women and over 40,000 men, researchers evaluated the effect of consuming fruits; vegetables; the antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E; and carotenoids on the development of early ARMD or neovascular ARM, a more severe form of the illness associated with vision loss.

Food intake information was collected periodically for up to 18 years for women and 12 years for men. While, surprisingly, intakes of vegetables, antioxidant vitamins and carotenoids were not strongly related to incidence of either form of ARM, fruit intake was definitely protective against the severe form of this vision-destroying disease.

Trying to eat 3 servings of fruit everyday can be difficult when you have a busy lifestyle. Fortunately there is a convenient alternative to get the required fruit you need each day. Beyond Berries is a convenient made from real fruit that you should know about.