I remember the day clearly. I was picking my mother up from her eye appointment. She had developed macular degeneration a few years before and this was a routine eye check. She got in the car and I could see that she was upset - she told me that they (the ophthalmologist) had taken her drivers licence off her.
We sat there for a moment - if you know my mother you know that she wouldn’t dwell and be quickly saying ‘but there are people much worse off than me’. But there was a moment when I felt the grief - not just of losing the right to drive, but of losing her independence. There were no words that could make it better.
Macular degeneration had sort of ‘jack-in-the-box’ sprung into our lives. First my aunt, who is more like my older sister, suddenly lost vision in one eye and was diagnosed with macular degeneration. Macular degeneration is an age-related eye disease that affects central vision but there is also one that runs in families with a high risk of siblings and children developing it.
It wasn’t that long after when my mother suddenly lost vision in one eye - it was macular degeneration and her scans looked just like her sister’s. Then my uncle developed the same thing. Yes, the familial macular degeneration runs in our family and I’m at risk like my siblings and my cousins.
And so, over a number of years, I have watched my mother go from seemingly normal vision to legally blind. You probably wouldn’t know that because she soldiers on - blindly. Words don’t describe the sadness I feel when I see that she can’t make out the faces of her grandchildren or can’t read the paper or play bridge anymore.
There are some treatments for macular degeneration but they’re not cures, just attempts to stop the advancement to becoming blind. There are things to do to prevent the advancement and I know that given the situation as it is, my mother’s greatest wish is that none of her children or nieces and nephews have to suffer the same.
So, what can we do? What can you do if you have early macular degeneration or a family history or you are just alive and getting older so at risk?
I take an Eye Formula that is based on the latest research on preventing macular degeneration. The study is called AREDS2 and came out in 2006 following the AREDS (age related eye disease study) from 2001.
I was going to get all medical and explain the studies but really all I need to say is that the studies were carried out rigorously and the results are valid. Basically, they show that taking vitamins and minerals with strong anti-oxidant properties and specifically related to the eye (AREDS2) reduces the advancement of macular degeneration.
It’s advanced macular degeneration that means you lose your licence and your independence. So, this treatment option is a little piece of magic in our family’s vision story.
The Eye Formula I take has the same ingredients in as the AREDS2 study with a couple of minor modifications - a slightly lower level of Vitamin E and the addition of Selenium. That’s because the clever scientists that made it took the research findings from AREDS2 and also findings from a study called SELECT.
The SELECT study was looking at the risk of high Vitamin E and prostate cancer. What they found is that high doses of Vitamin E were associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer but that with Vitamin E plus selenium there was no increased risk. So my formulation has taken this into account and reduced the Vitamin E slightly and added Selenium to the original AREDS2 formulation.
So, my Eye Formula contains:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
Is it time for you to take care of your eyes to preserve your vision so you don't have to guess what your grandchildren look like?
I imagine you may have some questions so I have tried to anticipate and answer them below.
Is the Eye Formula helpful for any other condition?
- yes. This formula is very helpful for anyone who has a sensitivity to light. It will reduce glare sensitivity
Could you just go to the health food shop and get these supplements individually?
- no. It would be unlikely that the doses would be high enough or in the correct blend to mirror the AREDS2 study
Could you just adjust your diet for more of the foods containing these ingredients?
- no. You wouldn’t achieve the doses that were comparable to those used in the study
When should I start taking this to prevent macular degeneration?
- that’s not an easy question to answer, but after the age of 50 you should certainly consider it especially if you have a family history. There is no lower age for starting, so if you have glare sensitivity in early adulthood, then start now
How can you get this Eye Formula?
that’s the easy part. You just speak to Zansie or me or message us in the contact form on the right (below if you are on a mobile device)
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