Study shows lutein may slow loss of vision

by Eric Schroeder
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BOSTON — Lutein supplementation may slow visual field loss, according to results of a study involving researchers at Harvard Medical School and appearing in the April issue of Archives of Ophthalmology.

In the randomized, controlled, double-masked trial, 225 non-smoking patients aged 18 to 60 received either 12 mg of lutein or a control tablet daily over a four-year interval. Everybody in the study also was given 15,000 International Units (I.U.) of vitamin A daily. The study used FloraGlo lutein from DSM Nutritional Products, Inc., which has an office in Parsippany, N.J.

The researchers concluded lutein supplementation of 12 mg a day slowed loss of mid-peripheral visual field on average among non-smoking adults with retinitis pigmentosa taking vitamin A. Retinitis pigmentosa is the name given to a group of inherited eye diseases that result in poor night vision in adolescence and the loss of side (mid-peripheral and far peripheral) vision in adults.

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