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PURPOSE OF REVIEW:
This review assesses the current status of the knowledge of the role of nutrition in age-related macular degeneration - a leading cause of vision loss in the persons with European ancestry.
We will evaluate the different nutritional factors and both observational and interventional studies used to assess the association of nutrition with age-related macular degeneration.
Persons with intermediate risk of age-related macular degeneration or advanced age-related macular degeneration in one eye are recommended to take the formulation proven in the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) to be successful in preventing the development of advanced age-related macular degeneration by 25%.
The formulation consists of vitamins C, E, beta-carotene and zinc. In addition, observational data suggest that high dietary intake of macular xanthophylls lutein and zeaxanthin are associated with a lower risk of advanced age-related macular degeneration.
Similarly, long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids derived from fish consumption are also associated with a decreased risk of advanced age-related macular degeneration.
Persons with intermediate age-related macular degeneration or advanced age-related macular degeneration (neovascular or central geographic atrophy) in one eye should consider taking the AREDS-type supplements. Further evaluation of nutritional factors, specifically, lutein/zeaxanthin and omega-3 fatty acids will be tested in a multicenter controlled, randomized trial - the Age-Related Eye Disease Study 2 (AREDS2).