Lutein and age-related ocular disorders in the older adult: a review

J Nutr Elder. 2007;26(3-4):139-57. doi: 10.1300/j052v26n03_07.


Lutein, a carotenoid found in dark green, leafy vegetables, has been implicated as being protective against the acquired ocular diseases, such as cataracts and age-related macular degeneration. In the eye, lutein may act as an antioxidant and as a blue light filter to protect the underlying tissues from phototoxic damage. Average intakes of lutein in the U.S. are below levels associated with eye disease prevention. Therefore, increased intakes of food sources rich in lutein may be warranted. Age-related factors, such as increased inflammation and body fat, are also related to increased risk of age-related eye disease. The mechanism by which these factors are related to risk may be partially due to adverse effects on lutein status.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aging / physiology
  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage
  • Cataract / diet therapy
  • Cataract / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Lutein / administration & dosage*
  • Macular Degeneration / diet therapy
  • Macular Degeneration / prevention & control*
  • Risk Factors


  • Antioxidants
  • Lutein