beta-carotene

This is the red-orange pigment found in carrots. It is converted to Vitamin A inside the body. Vitamin A is important in the retina for converting light into an electrical signal at the photoreceptors. High doses of Vitamin A have been used for the treatment of retinitis pigmentosa. This vitamin is also found in the eye vitamins used for the treatment of macular degeneration (see the AREDS Study for more information on this use).  Beta-carotene is associated with increased rates of lung cancer in smokers, which is why smokers with macular degeneration need to make sure they read the contents of any eye vitamins they take. Smokers should also stop smoking … but that goes without saying.

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Dr. Timothy Root is a practicing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon in Daytona Beach, Florida. His books, video lectures, and training resources can be found at:

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