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Zeaxanthin

What is It?*

Source Type: Carotenoid

Source(s): 

  • Naturally found in plant foods (leafy green vegetables, corn, orange bell peppers, citrus fruits)
  • Naturally found in egg yolk
  • Chemically synthesized in labs

Zeaxanthin is a naturally occurring carotenoid and antioxidant that, along with lutein, plays an essential role in supporting eye health. Zeaxanthin is particularly known for protecting the retina. It is a yellow or orange pigment found in certain fruits and vegetables, particularly leafy greens and citrus fruits.

Benefits*

Aside from promoting general eye health, the benefits of zeaxanthin include helping to delay or prevent the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and cataracts.

Effectiveness*

Zeaxanthin is effective in its role as an antioxidant and in supporting general eye health.

Numerous studies support the role of lutein and zeaxanthin in reducing the risk for age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It has also been found to be possibly effective in improving the symptoms of AMD. 

A 2017 review found that higher concentrations of lutein and zeaxanthin in the blood were linked to a reduced risk of developing cataracts.

Risks*

Zeaxanthin is generally considered safe for use by adults when consumed in recommended doses. Pregnant and breastfeeding women, as well as children, should consult with their doctor before taking any zeaxanthin supplements. There are no known medication interactions with zeaxanthin.

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