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Ask the Doctor—Cataracts—Mercury and Autism
By Terry Grossman, MD,
Q Are there any nutritional ways to prevent cataracts?
As light passes through the lens of the eye, proteins in the lens are unavoidably subjected to damage by free radicals. These damaged proteins change from crystal clear to cloudy and over time can create dark regions in the lens known as cataracts.
The body is able to prevent free-radical damage by transforming the toxic free radicals into harmless compounds through the use of three built-in antioxidant enzymes: catalase, superoxide dismutase, and glutathione peroxidase, all of which normally are found within the lens itself. However, a small percentage still escapes neutralization and can lead to lens damage and cataract formation.
In addition to the antioxidant enzymes, the body utilizes dietary vitamins, minerals, and other micronutrients as another line of defense to neutralize free-radical damage. Italian researchers established an association between diet and cataract risk 40 years ago when they found that people who consumed higher amounts of meat, cheese, cruciferous vegetables (like broccoli, kale, and cauliflower), spinach, tomatoes, peppers, citrus fruit, and melon needed cataract surgery less often. Increased risk occurred among people who consumed higher amounts of butter, total fat, and salt. They also found that using olive oil and eating spinach appeared to protect against cataract formation, while eating carrots did not.
Several more recent studies have looked at the relationship between nutritional supplementation and cataract risk. The most notable are highlighted below.
• The Lens Opacities Case-Control Study in 1991 followed 1,380 patients and found that “regular use of multi-vitamin supplements decreased risk” of cataract formation. Individual nutrients such as vitamins B1, B2, B3, C, and E; carotene; and iron reduced risk individually as did supplemental combinations of vitamins C and E and carotene.
• The Beaver Dam Eye Study from Wisconsin followed 1,354 patients from 1988 to 1995. Antioxidant intake was determined from a food questionnaire. People who consumed the highest amount of the bioflavonoid lutein—found in green, leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale as well as yellow foods such as squash and egg yolks—had 50 percent fewer cataracts compared with people who consumed the least lutein.
• The US Male Health Professionals’ Study followed 36,644 men between 45 and 75 years of age beginning in 1986 and found that men with a higher lutein intake had a 19 percent decreased rate of cataract surgery.
• The Blue Mountain Eye Study from Australia found that “long-term use of multivitamins, B group, and vitamin A supplements was associated with reduced prevalence of either nuclear or cortical cataracts.” Folate and vitamin B12 supplementation was also found to be useful.
• The Nurses’ Health Study from Boston found that vitamin C intake was associated with a 64 percent decreased cataract risk among women who used vitamin C for ...
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Walk Now for Autism Speaks: Wheeling
Dates: 5/17/2014 – 5/17/2014
Warwood Trail Wheeling
1200 Richland Ave
Walk Now for Autism Speaks is a fun-filled, family friendly event and is our single most powerful force to fund vital research that will lead us to the answers we need. Experience the power of thousands united by a single cause by joining Walk Now for Autism Speaks. Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disorder in the U.S. � we need more volunteers to join our fight. Whether this is your first walk or the 10th, take the first step and register today. You will not only raise funds, but you will become a part of a fun and supportive family-focused community.
Financial Planning for Special Needs Children - St. Clairsville
Dates: 12/9/2013 – 12/9/2013
Tomorrow's Corner Saint Clairsville
66730 Pogue Rd
by Lynn Tramontano, Financial Adviser, Edward Jones Investments, Columbus. The annual costs of autism therapies & treatments can exceed $40,000 to $60,000 per year. The lifetime cost to support an individual with autism is $3.2 million. Come to this very informative meeting to learn strategies for financially preparing for these costs. Many helpful tips & information on laws regarding medicaid, medicare and SSI requirements that you may not know about. Don't miss it!