Zeaxanthin is a fat soluble pigment found in the retina of the eye and is often associated with lutein, another pigment found in the retina. Zeaxanthin is also a carotenoid and very similar in structure to lutein.
Zeaxanthin can be found in a number of different plants, as it is the most common pigment. Most notably, it is found in bell peppers, paprika, saffron, and corn. They can also be found in eggs, which are very good for you.
The health benefits of Zeaxanthin are looking ever more promising with each new study. It has had promise in treatment of macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, and diabetic retinopathy.Â But what are most promising are Zeaxanthin’s antioxidant properties and its help protecting the eyes from UV light.
When UV light hits the eyes it can cause a number of problems, such as a sunburn on your cornea, snow blindness, or, if exposed over long periods of time, cataracts. Zeaxanthin filters light out of the eye and it has proven to lower the rate of getting cortical cataracts by 30%. When so many of our grandparents are getting cataracts and 5.5 million people in the US alone have cataracts, this is a staggering amount of aid.
The antioxidant effect Zeaxanthin has is just as wonderful.Â Antioxidants inhibit certain reactions in the body called oxidative reactions. These reactions are the same ones carried out by free radicals. Free radicals are molecules that are highly reactive and can cause damage to the body.
Free radicals will bind with the nearest molecule available and if this happens, it could have bad side effects. Sometime free radicals will find themselves binding to DNA and when this happens a mutation may occur. The mutation can cause anything from premature ageing to cancer. This is why Zeaxanthin as an antioxidant is so important. They help fight the free radicals and help our bodies stay healthy.