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Worried about your eyesight failing? Turns out there's something you can do about it

New Irish-based research proves conclusively that taking certain natural supplements can sharpen already healthy eyesight.

clark Source: YouTube

OUR EYESIGHT. IT’S something so fundamental to our everyday lives and it’s also something so many of us take for granted.

But for a huge amount of people their eyesight, while healthy, is fundamental to their job, or even their favourite pastime or hobby.

If you’ve worked in front of a computer screen for many years you probably share the fear – is what I do for a living eventually going to affect my sight?

Well, some very interesting new Irish-based research has just made some conclusive findings regarding certain supplements and their positive effect on those with already-healthy eyesight.

The research, which took place at Carriganore House in Waterford as part of Waterford Institute of Technology’s science faculty, was conducted into three natural substances (known as macular carotenoids) – they being lutein, zeaxanthin, and meso-zeaxanthin – and the effect they can have on a person’s vision.

The CREST research (Central Retinal Enrichment Supplementation Trials) ran for a year and was the first such study of its kind. And it has produced concrete results, now published in the international journal Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science.

Source: Macular Carotenoids/YouTube

“All of us involved in this research are tremendously excited about the outcome – not only from a scientific perspective but also because of the significant benefits it will have for a wide range of people,” said Professor John Nolan, principal investigator on the research at the official launch of the study.

Many people may already consider themselves to have good eyesight, but now we know that many of these would benefit from appropriate supplementation.

Research

The study consisted of the testing of 105 participants, all of whom received daily supplements. 53 of those received the test substances, the remainder were issued a placebo.

The results unequivocally proved that the substances mentioned above when administered daily resulted in improved eyesight for those who had been taking them, specifically as regards viewing faint lines (ie how much contrast is needed to view a ‘target’).

Noel Connors Noel Connors Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The significance of the findings can’t be understated – driving, reading, participation in high-level sport, commercial flying, quality control – all are aided by a significant improvement in a person’s eyesight.

What’s more, those who participated in the study (including Waterford inter-county hurler Noel Connors, who was in fact discounted as a test-subject because his eyesight was ‘too good’) are truly delighted with the results.

“It’s absolutely amazing,” 64-year-old Anne Cullen told TheJournal.ie.

I can read the tiniest print now, in the office I work in some of the lads are amazed.

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Anne had worn glasses since she was 23. No more.

“I don’t wear them at all for any reason, it’s just fantastic,” she says.

Anne took the supplements daily throughout the 12-month study period. She now takes a high-street supplement containing the three carotenoids.

anne Anne Cullen and Professor John Nolan at the launch of the research paper Source: Mary Browne

“I wouldn’t be without it to be honest. You have to understand I didn’t know what I was taking until the end of the trial. It deserves to be better known because if people only realised.”

Anne’s younger sister for one is a convert. That came about when she realised her older sister had stopped wearing glasses. Now she likewise is glasses-free.

Waterford hurler Connors meanwhile describes the uses the findings may be put to from a sporting view.

“When you look at the likes of baseball, or hurling – sports where you can barely see the ball, the benefits really are there,” he says.

Research like this is so important especially in sport – you’re talking about improving people’s natural capabilities.

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