Omega-3 Fatty Acids Could Potentially Help Elderly To Ward Off AMD

Older people who consume a lot of omega-3 fatty acids as part of their diet can possibly ward off age-related macular degeneration (AMD), Pakistan Today reported.

According to the online article, researchers conducted a follow-up analysis of a one-year dietary study done in the first half of the 1990s. The survey reflected the opinions of close to 2,400 elderly persons aged between 65 and 84 who resided in the Eastern Shore are of Maryland, where large amounts of seafood are consumed regularly, according to the article.

The article noted not only that poll participants ate an average of at least a single portion of shellfish or fish each week, but also that participants who had advanced-stage AMD ate less seafood and fish that had omega-3 fatty acids.

According to the article, participants were, after researchers determined their food intake habits, subjected to eye examinations. Around 450 were found to have AMD, and 68 of them had advanced cases of the eye condition that can adversely impact the ability to drive, write and recognize faces. While it has previously been reported that dietary zinc can safeguard against AMD, the researchers did not find any conclusive evidence to support this finding. The researchers noted that the correlation between zinc and AMD could possibly be easier to prove if zinc comes courtesy of supplements rather than courtesy of the consumption of seafood such as crabs and oysters.

Although people might be tempted to rush out to their local drugstores and health food outlets to pick up omega-3 supplements to ward off AMD, researchers said in the article that this would not be the right thing to do. They explained in the article that the findings were not conclusive enough to ascertain with absolute certainty whether or not taking omega-3 supplements can indeed protect people from getting AMD. While the possible correlation is important and should not be dismissed outright, the researchers said in the article that more comprehensive follow-up studies are needed before the impact can be adequately assessed.

Meanwhile, lost of research has shown that people can help to protect their eyes from AMD by being more proactive in adopting a healthy lifestyle that includes eating lots of leafy greens, citrus fruits and other produce.

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