Dietary Omega-3s and Eating Oily Fish May Support Eye Health
Fish intake, the major source of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), may reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). There are two types of AMD: wet and dry. Of these two types, wet AMD is the primary cause of vision loss.
In a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers recruited 105 people (age 65 and over) with wet AMD and 2170 healthy people to act as controls, then compared their dietary habits using questionnaires. The scientists then investigated the association of oily fish and dietary DHA and EPA with wet AMD.
Compared to people who consumed less than one portion of fish per week, participants who consumed at least one serving of oily fish per week had a 50 percent reduction in risk of developing wet AMD. In addition, people who got at least 300 mg per day of DHA and EPA were 68 and 71 percent less likely to have wet AMD than those with lower consumptions.
The results of this study support previous research indicating a protective benefit of omega-3s against the onset of AMD. The benefit may be due in part to their important role in the layer of nerve cells in the retina.