Vitamin C is widely recommended as a panacea for the common cold. However, researchers have found that the ascorbic acid found in vitamin C could also fight off cataracts.
Even though you won’t be able to end a cataract completely by taking a lot of vitamin C, you can reduce its symptoms. Doctors also agree that it’s possible to delay the onset of the eye disease with the vitamin.
According to the study featured in the journal Ophthalmology, most of the vitamin C intake should come from one’s diet and not supplements.
Cataracts are often the result of growing old, and they appear as a clouded layer of material covering the surface of the eyes. Statistics say cataracts are the leading cause of blindness on a global level.
For the study, researchers looked at 1000 female twins, whose average age was 60 years. Over a decade, the participants who took large amounts of vitamin C reduced their chances of developing a cataract by a third compared to those who didn’t.
It’s also noteworthy that substituting vitamin C from the daily diet with supplements did not have the same result. The trick was to obtain it mainly from natural products which contain ascorbic acid.
The new study underscores the importance of lifestyle and dietary factors regarding the prevention of cataracts. Genes are responsible for 35 percent of one’s chances to contract cataract in old age, but dietary habits account for the remaining 65 percent.
That is a huge role for environmental factors when it comes to the onset of the disease. One can remain free of cataracts for their entire life as long as they are careful with the factors they can influence – unlike one’s genes – such as following a balanced diet of fresh fruits and vegetables.
But further research is required because the “correlation does not prove causation” concept rings true with this discovery as well.
Vitamin C is a natural antioxidant that helps cleans up all the free radicals that build up over time in the body. Besides this, previous studies have shown the fluid in the eye is high in vitamin C.
Researchers are still looking for a cure for cataracts. In the meantime, people are encouraged to maintain a balanced diet that contains papaya, broccoli, citrus fruits – like tangerines, grapefruit, oranges and lemons – as well as strawberries.
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