Natural herbal & homeopathic remedies for age related Macular Degeneration

Macular Degeneration
HEALTH HERBS & NUTRITION - REMEDIES - EYES AND VISION - macular degeneration

· General Description

· Symptoms

· Causes

· Herbal & Homeopathic Remedies

· Helpful Dietary Habits

· Dos and Don'ts

Natural herbal & homeopathic products for age related Macular Degeneration

General description & overview of age related Macular Degeneration

Macular degeneration is one of the most common eye diseases in the elderly. In effect, it is the leading cause of blindness in people termed legally blind. In America alone, millions of people are affected by it.

Basically, macular degeneration occurs when age takes its toll on the macula, the area of the retina responsible for central vision sharpness. Degenerative changes take place in the blood vessels and retinal cells of the macula resulting in gradual loss of central vision. This type of macular degeneration is known as dry macular degeneration and accounts for nearly 90% of the cases.

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Wet macular degeneration, which comprises 90% of all severe vision loss from the disease, involves a sudden loss of central vision. It occurs when new blood vessels behind the retina grow toward the macula and leak blood and fluid, or in other words, abnormal blood vessels develop in the retina and hemorrhage.

One of the major risk factors is prolonged exposure to bright light which has led to the view that damage to the retina is caused by free radicals. Cell metabolism along with the effect of rays (especially light rays) produce these highly unstable and reactive atoms or group of atoms. There occurrence in large numbers degrades cell membranes. Antioxidant enzymes and nutrients (vitamins and minerals) are therefore required in the blood to gobble up these free radicals and render them harmless.

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Symptoms of age related Macular Degeneration

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Slightly blurred or dark central vision

Herbal supplements & cures for age related Macular Degeneration. Macular degeneration usually begins in one eye, but most often ends up affecting the second eye as well. As the whole process is painless and gradual, the disease goes unnoticed until a great deal of central vision is lost.

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Difficulty in doing activities that require sharp vision (e.g., driving and reading)

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A blurred spot in the central field of vision, which may become larger and darker (dry maculopathy)

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Straight lines that appear wavy (distortions) and the rapid loss of central vision; sometimes, starting with a sudden blind spot (wet maculopathy)

  Please Note: Peripheral (side) vision may remain clear.
 

If you have any of the above symptoms, an immediate visit to an optometrist or an ophthalmologist is called for. S/he will then perform the following tests to gauge your state:

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Eye chart testing – your vision will be checked with an eye chart to measure your eye’s ability to see at various distances.

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Pupil dilation – medicated drops are placed in your eyes to widen their pupils so that more of the retina is available for scrutiny

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Checking for presence of drusen (tiny yellow deposits in the retina).

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Amsler's grid - Testing is carried out using Amsler's grid, which incorporates covering one eye and focusing other on a black dot in the center of a checkerboard-like grid. If the straight lines in the pattern appear wavy or the lines appear to be missing, this indicates to the second kind of macular degeneration – the wet one.

 

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Causes of age related Macular Degeneration

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Age – natural deterioration of the macula

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Cigarette smoking (cigarette smoke creates a hell lot of free radicals)

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Excessive exposure to sunlight or other ultra-violet (UV) rays

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Genetic

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Cardiovascular disease

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Diabetes

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Unhealthy dietary habits (like high intake of saturated fats and dietary cholesterol)

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High cholesterol levels

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Light eye color

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Beer consumption (unconfirmed)

Homeopathic medicines & cures for age related Macular Degeneration. •	Fluorescein angiography – here a special dye is injected into a vein in the arm and pictures are taken as the dye passes through the blood vessels in the retina.

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Herbal & homeopathic remedies useful in age related Macular Degeneration

Conventional treatments for dry macular degeneration may include nutritional supplementation such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E, beta-carotene with zinc and antioxidants to prevent free radicals or unstable oxygen from damaging the retina. The wet form of macular degeneration can lead to serious vision loss but there are various laser treatment options such as photodynamic therapy available to lessen the vision loss in the early stages.

Natural and holistic treatments can also help to promote healthy vision and reduce symptoms including blurred vision, hemorrhaging of the eyes, and disorders of the retina. Treatments such as herbal and homeopathic remedies can provide a gentle alternative to conventional drugs, and at the same time address overall health and wellbeing.

Natural macular degeneration supplements may include herbs such as: Vaccinium myrtillus (bilberry) which has well known anti-oxidant properties, ensuring the health of all cells and tissues of the body, including the eyes, and also assist with circulation. Aspalathus linearis (Rooibos) which is an effective all round tonic for the immune system and helps to maintain digestive health, liver functioning and promote healthy blood sugar levels. Sutherlandia frutescens is also commonly used in macular degeneration supplements for its adaptogenic properties as well as anti-oxidant effects. Remember to always ensure your natural remedies are sourced from reputable companies for maximum safety, therapeutic dosage and effectiveness.

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Vaccinium myrtillus (Billberry) - Most famous use of bilberry is in the treatment for vein and lymphatic disorders. This is achieved by the berries of bilberry which are rich in anthocyanins that strengthen the capillaries and reduce their permeability. This facilitates delivery of essential oxygen and nutrients to the eye and has been shown to be effective in the prevention and treatment of retinopathy. Other constituents of the bilberry berry are vitamin C, tannins and catechin, a polyphenol. Anthocyanins, which are antioxidants, along with vitamin C fight against the free radicals present in the food and the atmosphere. These, together with vitamin E, have proved to be very good in treating eyesight related problems like macular degeneration. It also reduces the incidence of hemorrhage in the eye which is usually associated with diabetes. Studies have clearly suggested that eye symptoms normally associated with the natural aging process can be effectively managed using bilberry.

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Aspalathus linearis (Rooibos) - This herb is found in the Cedarberg mountains in the Western Cape of South Africa., Rooibos, just like bilberry, also has powerful anti-oxidant properties, mainly due to its supeoxide dismutase (SOD) mimetic properties. SOD is an enzyme in the body which is especially designed to neutralize unstable free radicals as soon as they occur and can therefore help to prevent retinopathy. It is also considered an effective all round tonic and restorative and the one that balances blood sugar levels. Rooibos’s high mineral content helps in maintaining healthy metabolism. It alos helps in lowering blood pressure and enhancing immunity. It is an extremely nutritious herb, containing Vitamin C, Alphahydroxy Acid, potassium, copper, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, manganese and fluoride. These minerals have been shown to have great benefit with regards to eye health.

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Grape seed extract is a potent source of proanthocyanidins or pycnogenols containing naturally occurring proanthocyanidins, a naturally powerful antioxidant. Proanthocyanidins also have an affinity for cell membranes, providing nutritional support to reduce capillary permeability and fragility. The way in which these versatile compounds are distinct from flavonoids is their simple chemical structure, which allows them to be readily absorbed into the bloodstream. Vitamin E defends against fat-soluble oxidants and vitamin C neutralizes water-soluble ones, but OPC’s are active against both types. Grape seed extract has also been investigated for its affect on free radicals and thus its promotion of health.

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Camellia sinensis (Green tea) is the tea plant, the plant species whose leaves and leaf buds are used to produce tea. White tea, green tea, oolong and black tea are all harvested from this species, but are processed differently to attain different levels of oxidation. Green tea contains high levels of substances called catechin polyphenols, known to possess strong antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, antitumorigenic, and even antibiotic properties.

Herbal & homeopathic products recommended in age related Macular Degeneration

Vizu-All Plus for age related Macular Degeneration

Vizu-All Plus

Maintain healthy eyes and circulatory health.

Product Details

Bio-oxidate Defense for age related Macular Degeneration

Bio-Oxidate Defense

Support cell integrity with natural antioxidants.

Product Details

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Dietary recommendations & restrictions in age related Macular Degeneration

Nutritive diet (actually, in some cases, nutritional supplements as well, according to your doctor’s prescription) is a valuable treatment for dry macular degeneration. It may also help prevent both wet and dry types related to aging.

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Most of research has focused on foods containing vitamin E and A (vitamin A is found in the form of beta carotene in plants) as these two are believed to be very effective in protecting eyes from free radical damage. The results show that people consuming enough dark green leafy vegetables (rich source of beta carotene) have much less degeneration of their maculae. This is probably due to the findings that lutein and zeaxanthin, which are antioxidants in the carotenoid family and related to beta carotene, build up in that part of the retina where macular degeneration occurs. Once there, they protect the retina from damage caused by sunlight by filtering out the rays at either end of the spectrum.

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As damage from oxidative stress is thought to contribute to the development of macular degeneration, antioxidants like vitamin C and selenium are considered vital for protection against the development or progression of macular degeneration.

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Zinc is an essential requirement for producing two important enzymes in the retina that are needed for vision. Therefore, zinc intake is related to significant reduction in the rate of visual loss in people with macular degeneration.

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Omega-3 fatty acids also contribute towards protection against macular degeneration. This is commensurate with the studies that show that people having lots of oily fish (rich in omega-3s) in their diet had fewer such eye problems.

Foods rich in the above vitamins and minerals are:

Vitamin C: Diet containing fresh fruits and vegetables should provide you with enough vitamin C in a day although emphasis must be given on citrus fruits (fresh fruits in totality and not their juice only) like grapes and blackberries, as they also contain bioflavonoids. Some important fruits and vegetables are blackcurrant, vegetables (broccoli, potatoes)red capsicums and chillies, strawberry, kiwifruit and rockmelon.

Vitamin A: Usual sources of vitamin A (in the form of beta carotene) are whole milk, curds, egg yolk, pumpkin, carrots, leafy vegetables, tomatoes, mangoes, and papaya.

Vitamin E: Its sources include avocados, nuts, seed oils, sunflower seeds, green leafy vegetables, eggs, pumpkin seeds and wheat germ.

Zinc: Seafood (particularly shellfish and oysters), wheat germ, dairy products, chicken, beef, eggs and nuts are rich sources of zinc.

Selenium: wholegrain cereals, fish, liver, shellfish, red meat, chicken, garlic.

Lutein and zeaxanthin: richest source are spinach and kale.

Omega-3 fatty acids are primarily found in seafood; fish such as salmon (especially Atlantic and red, canned in brine)sardines (canned in water), mackerel (canned in brine), mullet, tuna etc., and pecans and trevally. Walnuts are also an extremely good source of omega-3.

Dietary recommendations for age related Macular Degeneration.

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Flavonoids (such as quercetin, rutin, and resveritrol) may also play a role in preventing macular degeneration or delay the progression of macular degeneration if you already have the eye condition. Red wine and dark berries such as blue berries, dark cherries and blackberries are rich sources of these flavonoids.

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Be lean and mean as obesity is considered in today’s time a major contributory factor in eye disorders. Therefore, and also to avoid many more other diseases, avoid refined foods and foods containing trans-fatty acids such as white breads, pastas, cookies, sugar, cream, crackers, cakes, rice, boiled potatoes, puddings and pies, condiments, pickles, sauces, French fries, onion rings, donuts, and margarine.

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Instead of red meats, go for more lean meats, cold-water fish, tofu (soy, if no allergy) or, still better, beans for protein.

Natural & alternative medicines, remedies & cures for age related Macular Degeneration. High potency multivitamin-mineral supplements are also prescribed for glaocoma, but they should be taken only under medical supervision. Natural nutrients are definitely easier to absorb and they obviously serve the basic purpose of fulfilling your appetite also. In effect, with proper care and attention of your diet, you might totally eliminate the need to take any conventional medications or supplements, especially as a preventive measure.

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Use light and healthy cooking oils, such as olive oil or vegetable oil.

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Avoid excessive consumption of stimulants like tea, coffee, alcohol, and tobacco.

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Go heavy on fluids - Drink at least 7 - 8 glasses of water daily

Dos and don'ts (precautionary measures) in age related Macular Degeneration

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Stop smoking naturally, as smokers have a higher risk of developing macular degeneration.

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Protect your eyes from sun exposure by wearing sunglasses to block ultraviolet sunrays.

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People over 65 years should have regular vision exams that include screening for age-related macular degeneration.

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Consult an ophthalmologist or eye specialist immediately if you experience any signs of vision loss.

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Herbal & homeopathic products recommended in age related Macular Degeneration

Vizu-All Plus

Maintain healthy eyes and circulatory health.

Product Details

Bio-Oxidate Defense

Support cell integrity with natural antioxidants.

Product Details

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