Aging & Geriatrics
Resources
Basic InformationLatest News
Time Spent on the Links May Lengthen LifeWith Macular Degeneration, 1 Missed Visit to Eye Doc Can Mean Vision LossAgeism Affects People Around the GlobeLife Expectancy in U.S. Increases for First Time in 4 YearsDiets Rich in Fruits, Veggies Could Lower Your Odds for Alzheimer'sBlood Pressure Dips Upon Standing Might Not Be as Dangerous as ThoughtAll in the Timing: Many Get Knee Replacement Too Late or Too SoonWant a Long, Healthy Old Age? A Healthy Middle Age HelpsEven 1 Night's Bad Sleep Can Raise Levels of a Brain 'Marker' for Alzheimer'sSeniors Still Wary of Online Reviews When Picking DoctorsWant to Turn Back the Aging Clock? Train for a MarathonExercise May Keep Your Brain HealthyMore Doubt That Plaques in the Brain Cause Alzheimer'sTo Avoid Falls, Check Your BalanceFatty Diets Tied to Leading Cause of Vision Loss in SeniorsVitamin D Alone Doesn't Prevent Fractures, New Study FindsLove Museums, Theater? The Arts Might Extend Your LifeOut-of-Pocket Costs for Medicare Recipients Will Rise in New Year'Prehab' Before Surgery Helps Speed Seniors' RecoveryRural Seniors Hurt by Lack of Medical SpecialistsHow Well Are You Aging? A Blood Test Might TellTaking Several Prescription Drugs May Trigger Serious Side EffectsCards, Board Games Could Be a Win for Aging BrainsAir Pollution May Up Glaucoma RiskEven in Small Doses, Air Pollution Harms Older AmericansCan Air Pollution Take a Toll on Your Memory?AHA News: Obesity, Other Factors May Speed Up Brain AgingGrandma Isn't So Lonely After AllMuscle in Middle Age Might Help Men's Hearts LaterFish Oil Rx Slows Clogging in ArteriesStatins Won't Harm Aging Brains, and May Even HelpAlmost Half of Older Americans Fear Dementia, Try Untested Ways to Fight ItPeople Who Can't Read Face 2-3 Times Higher Dementia RiskAHA News: Omega-3 May Boost Brain Health in People With a Common Heart DiseaseCommon Muscle Relaxant Could Pose Mental Dangers for SeniorsEducation a Buffer Against Alzheimer's Among Blacks: StudyEven a Little Exercise May Bring a Brain BoostVitamin D is Key to Muscle Strength in Older AdultsMany Older Americans Misuse Antibiotics: PollMany on Medicare Still Face Crippling Medical BillsTest Given at 8 May Predict Your Brain Health in Old AgeNumber of Americans With Dementia Will Double by 2040: Report'Dramatic Increase' Seen in U.S. Deaths From Heart FailureToo Many Seniors Back in Hospital for Infections Treated During First StayFor Seniors, Financial Woes Can Be Forerunner to Alzheimer'sGet Moving: Exercise Can Help Lower Older Women's Fracture RiskDon't Forget These Tips to Boost Your MemoryFamily Can Help Keep Delirium at Bay After SurgeryHow to Manage Your OsteoarthritisHealth Tip: Brain Games for Seniors
Questions and AnswersVideosLinksBook ReviewsSelf-Help Groups
Related Topics

Depression: Depression & Related Conditions
Elder Care

Fatty Diets Tied to Leading Cause of Vision Loss in Seniors

HealthDay News
by By Serena Gordon
HealthDay Reporter
Updated: Dec 26th 2019

new article illustration

THURSDAY, Dec. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Diets heavy in red meat and fatty foods could help spur a leading cause of vision loss in older Americans, new research suggests.

The study found that people who ate more typical Western diets were three times more likely to develop an eye condition that robs you of your central vision -- late-stage age-related macular degeneration.

"What you eat seems to be important to your vision, and to whether or not you have vision loss later in life," said study lead author Amy Millen. She's an associate professor in the department of epidemiology and environmental health at the University at Buffalo's School of Public Health and Health Professions, in Buffalo, N.Y.

"People know that diet influences cardiovascular risk and the risk of obesity, but the public may not know that diet can affect vision loss," Millen said.

Age-related macular degeneration occurs when a part of the eye called the macula is damaged. Sometimes this happens when deposits called drusen grow on the macula. Or it can occur when new blood vessels keep forming and leak blood, scarring the macula, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Genetics and smoking are known risk factors for age-related macular degeneration.

The study included almost 1,300 people from a nationally representative sample. Most did not have macular degeneration. There were 117 who had early AMD, and 27 had late.

All of the study participants completed surveys about their diets twice during the 18-year study.

The researchers sorted the foods into 29 categories to measure the quality of the diet.

They found that people who ate a more Western diet were much more likely to develop late-stage AMD. Foods linked to a higher risk included:

  • Red and processed meats
  • Fats, such as margarine and butter
  • High-fat dairy
  • Fried foods.

"Diet is one way you might be able to modify your risk of vision loss from age-related macular degeneration," Millen said, especially if you have a family history of the disease.

She noted that since the study was observational, it couldn't prove that eating healthy foods would reduce the risk of AMD, but she said it did show the foods you probably don't want to eat often.

Dr. Avnish Deobhakta, an ophthalmologist at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai in New York City, wasn't involved with the study, but said he wasn't surprised by the findings.

"This study shows what we've suspected. A diet high in fatty foods, processed meats and refined grains makes the more severe form of macular degeneration more likely," Deobhakta said.

Both Millen and Deobhakta said inflammation caused by a less healthy diet and stress on the cells in the eyes (oxidative stress) are likely behind the increased risk.

"The eyes are a sentinel for the rest of the body. In the tiny blood vessels of the eyes, even small changes that you would not otherwise notice in other organs, you will notice in the eyes," Deobhakta said.

So can you make up for a lifetime of eating poorly? That's not known. But both experts said that a healthy diet -- full of vegetables (especially dark, leafy greens) and fruits and fatty fish -- contains important nutrients for eye health, including lutein and zeaxanthin.

"It's difficult to switch the way you eat overnight, but this is almost certainly a decades-long process, so try to slowly move toward more virtuous behavior with food. Try to supplement your current diet with more leafy vegetables and increase your consumption of fish," Deobhakta said.

And both experts strongly advised no smoking.

The study was published in the December issue of the British Journal of Ophthalmology.

More information

Learn more about macular degeneration from the American Academy of Ophthalmology.




Facebook

Amazon Smile

 

Children and Adult services are available now with no wait time.  

Please contact HBH at 860-548-0101, option 2.

 


powered by centersite dot net