Lens opacification or cataract reduces vision in over 80 million people worldwide and blinds 18 million. These numbers will increase dramatically as both the size of the elderly demographic and the number of those with carbohydrate metabolism-related problems increase. Preventative measures for cataract are critical because the availability of cataract surgery in much of the world is insufficient. Epidemiologic literature suggests that the risk of cataract can be diminished by diets that are optimized for vitamin C, lutein/zeaxanthin, B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, multivitamins, and carbohydrates: recommended levels of micronutrients are salutary. The limited data from intervention trials provide some support for observational studies with regard to nuclear - but not other types of - cataracts. Presented here are the beneficial levels of nutrients in diets or blood and the total number of participants surveyed in epidemiologic studies since a previous review in 2007.
Keywords: aging; carbohydrate; carotenoids; cataract; eye; glycation; glycemic index; lens; omega fats; vitamins.
© 2013 International Life Sciences Institute.