Thursday, December 02, 2010

Eye-Protective Effects of Omega-3-Rich Fish, Shellfish

Researchers at Wilmer Eye Institute, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, wanted to know whether a reduced risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) would be found in a population of older people for whom fish and shellfish were a normal part of the diet, since some fish are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids.

A diet rich in omega-3s probably protects against advanced AMD, the leading cause of blindness in whites in the United States, according to the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) and other recent studies. High concentrations of omega-3s have been found in the eye's retina, and evidence is mounting that the nutrient may be essential to eye health. The new research, led by Sheila K. West, PhD, was part of the Salisbury Eye Evaluation (SEE) study.

"Our study corroborates earlier findings that eating omega-3-rich fish and shellfish may protect against advanced AMD." Dr. West said. "While participants in all groups, including controls, averaged at least one serving of fish or shellfish per week, those who had advanced AMD were significantly less likely to consume high omega-3 fish and seafood," she said.

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