Macular degeneration – also called age-related macular degeneration is a disorder that causes a progressive visual loss due to the degeneration of the macula – a tiny area at the center of the retina. Specifically, it is the portion of the eye that is responsible for fine vision.
Before we delve into macular degeneration symptoms, let's discuss types of this age-related vision condition.
1. Atrophic- better known as “dry” macular degeneration. This type is more common and accounts for roughly 85 to 90 percent of macular degeneration cases. It is characterized by yellowish deposits called drusen that form within the layers of the retina. As such, the light sensitive cells in the macula slowly break down and with less of the macula functioning, central vision diminishes. There is no evidence of scars, blood, or other fluid leakage.
2. Exudative – better known as “wet” macular degeneration. Although this type is less common, it is typically more damaging. Wet macular degeneration is caused by the growth of abnormal blood vessels behind the macula. These new blood vessels tend to be very fragile and are accompanied by leaking or hemorrhaging, often resulting to scarring and loss of vision.
Gradual increase in the haziness of your overall vision
Macular Degeneration Causes
The exact cause of macular degeneration has not been found. However, some experts state that the degeneration is probably the result of free radical damage, similar to the type of damage that induces cataracts. Free radicals are highly reactive chemical substances that can attack and damage cells, impairing the integrity of cellular material within the body, leading to premature disease and aging.
Factors that can predispose a person to developing this condition include smoking, atherosclerosis, hypertension, and environmental toxins. In addition, heredity may play a role in macular degeneration as well.
Macular Degeneration Treatment
Laser therapy is often used to treat "wet" forms of macular degeneration. However, no one has found an accepted medical treatment for dry age-related macular degeneration.
Visual aids, dietary recommendations, and nutritional supplements have all been used to halt the progression of vision loss.
Dietary and Lifestyle
Steps to Halt Age-Related Macular Degeneration Symptoms
Consume more green leafy vegetables, especially collard, kale, mustard, spinach, and turnip greens. Also, increase your consumption of legumes; yellow vegetable; flavonoids-rich berries such as blackberries, cherries, blueberries, and foods rich in vitamin E and C.
Cut out saturated fats, alcohol, and all sugars. If you smoke, try to quit because smoking is a major risk factor for macular degeneration.
What about caffeine? Caffeine in any form - from coffee, cola, or chocolate should also be avoided because some experts claim that it can worsen this condition.
Wear sunglasses when you're outside to protect the retina from further damage from ultraviolet radiation.
Steps to Halt Age-Related Macular Degeneration Symptoms
Antioxidant nutrients are often touted as powerhouses to help with macular degeneration, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc, beta-carotene, and selenium. However, there are two other potent antioxidants that are highly recommended by Naturopaths and other like-minded experts called lutein and zeaxanthin.
These two are believed to play a critical role in the prevention of this condition. Moreover, besides preventing the condition, some experts believe lutein may be able to stop or even reverse existing macular degeneration. Lutein is a pigment found in green leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens, spinach, and in supplements. Zeaxanthin is a powerful nutrient that is also found in high concentrations in leafy green vegetables, such as spinach. Zeaxanthin has shown in studies to decrease the incidence of age related macular degeneration.
Now, let's take a look at some other powerful nutrients that have been shown to be crucial in promoting vision health:
1. Bilberry has an age-old reputation for improving vision. Bilberry is rich in potent antioxidants such as vitamin C and anthocyanosides, flavonoids that are noted to be beneficial to the retina. In fact, bilberry is widely used in Europe to treat diabetic retinopathy. It has been found beneficial for visual conditions such as cataracts, macular degeneration, poor night vision, and other related eye problems like eyestrain.
2. Ginkgo Biloba is an antioxidant that according to small, preliminary trials may help treat early-stage macular degeneration.
3. Copper is needed to balance with Zinc.
4. Vitamin B complex - Some of the B vitamins, especially vitamin B2 riboflavin, play an important role in retinal function and, as such, may be helpful for this condition. The B vitamins work together as a team and should always be taken together. More specifically, taking any one of the B complex vitamins for a long period of time can result in an imbalance of other important B vitamins. For this reason, it is often recommended that single B vitamins be taken as part of a B-complex supplement or multivitamin.
Remember to always consult your physician before taking supplements to halt macular degeneration symptoms, including the use of supplements for the prevention of macular degeneration.
A Comprehensive Formula for Macular Degeneration
One company that produces a product that contains all of the above ingredients -- and more -- is Xtend-Life Natural Products. Their flagship formula, called Total Balance is the most powerful health supplement our extensive research has uncovered to date. As such, it may be of interest to those with age related macular degeneration as well as those interested in trying to ward off this condition. In fact, before you develop macular degeneration symptoms, consider Total Balance as part of your daily regimen.
Total Balance, however, is more than just an eye health product. It contains over 70 specialized nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, specialty nutrients, enzymes, potent antioxidants, and herbal extracts that the body needs for optimal 'whole' body health.
Although we here at Nutritional-Supplement-Educational-Centre do not suffer from macular degeneration, we have been taking Xtend-Life's Total Balance for several years now and can personally attest to its excellent results such as an increase in energy levels, mental clarity, and an increase feeling of well-being -- just to name a few benefits.
We hope this webpage discussing macular degeneration symptoms was useful to you.
To your heath!
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