Retinal Health Overview

Maintaining healthy blood vessels is essential for preserving healthy vision, especially those located in the retina in the back of the eye that are particularly susceptible to damage.  Oftentimes a patient may not realize their retinal health is at risk until significant damage has already occurred. This is why regular dilated eye exams are so vital.

Patients should consult with their eye doctor if they experience any of the following:

• Seeing spots or floaters in their field of vision
• Blurred vision
• Having a dark or empty spot in the center of their vision
• Difficulty seeing well at night
• Red veils or smudges in their vision caused by significant bleeding

Did you know that health issues associated with poor retinal health is now the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20–74 years? This statistic, coupled with the projected rise of retinal health related disease in the U.S. population, only reinforces the need to preserve blood vessel health.

Several factors influence retinal health, including blood sugar control, blood pressure levels, poor nutritional habits, cigarette smoking, and inherited genes. All of these factors can lead to blood vessel breakdown in the retina. Additionally, the following are all contributing factors to blood vessel damage:

• Growth factors
• Hypertension
• Dyslipidemia
• Hormones
• Apoptosis
• Inflammation

There are a few retinal health products in the market that help support blood vessel health, however most do not have significant science to support their respective formulations. Eye doctors are encouraged to research all nutritional supplements, and in particular look for formulas that:

• Improve retinal metabolism, structure, and function
• Are science-based and supported
• Have been tested in animals and humans
• Have results that are published in a formal study

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