It seems not a week goes by when another fantastical claim is made about this or that super food or supplement. Then the next week, that claim is totally debunked. Some other food or supplement then becomes the number one healthy option. Very recently the Advertising Standards Authority (in the UK) told a supplements’ manufacturer not to repeat its claims. They claimed that its supplements could cure Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and improve eyesight. So it is no wonder that there is now a lot of skepticism. So what is the best eye supplement?
In this post, I wanted to provide you with a shortlist of the best eye supplement for eye health available on Amazon.com using the following criteria:
»Those that include the ingredients recommended by scientific research
»Those that have the most natural ingredients.
The Scientific Results Differ But Not a Lot
Research from the Waterford Institute of Technology, Ireland, found that taking a supplement containing the following (lutein (10mg), meso-zeaxanthin (10mg) and zeaxanthin (2mg)) could improve eyesight. They increased the perception of yellow and blue colors and improved night vision). These carotenoids are found in the macular. They are collectively known as macular pigment. The macular is important to our vision as it is responsible for our central vision.
Research in the US however showed a reduced risk of AMD worsening in certain groups with the condition when taking the following in a supplement: 500 mg vitamin C, 400 IU vitamin E, 10 mg lutein, 2 mg zeaxanthin, 80 mg zinc and 2 mg copper. This was the study called AREDS2. You can read more about this at Brightfocus.org.
To be clear, this study was not looking at whether supplements could prevent AMD. But whether it could prevent further deterioration of the macular for those who already had the condition.
So in both studies, the recommended amount is 10mg of lutein and 2mg of zeaxanthin. Both being carotenoids which act as as a block to harmful UV or blue light. However, they differ on the amount of the other carotenoid, meso-zeaxanthin. The Irish study recommending 10mg and the AREDS2 study not recommending any. That study advocated high doses of Vitamins C and E and some minerals instead).
So in the short list below I have tried to find supplements that contain as far as possible the recommended doses from both of these studies (in the event you favor the one over the other). I found on the Amazon.com website the doses of lutein and zeaxanthin did vary a lot between the products. This was surprising because the doses of the compounds in the products shown on the Amazon.co.uk website were, on the whole, consistent. Click here if you wish to read my post on the shortlist of those products.
So my favorites are as follows:
Vision Max Capsules
These capsules contain near enough the recommended dosage as set out in the Irish study findings. They contain 10mg of lutein, 10mg of meso-zeaxanthin and 1mg of zeaxanthin.
In addition to that, the manufacturers have added saffron (they say that clinical studies at the university of L’Aquila in Italy have shown saffron has a positive effect on eye performance). And furthermore, they contain vitamins and minerals as recommended by the AREDS2 study.
On top of that, they are 100% natural: no artificial coloring, preservatives and GMO. They are also gluten free and vegan friendly.
There are 60 capsules in a pack and 1 capsule is to be taken daily with food.
Eye Defense By Natural Stacks
This product contains a whopping 20mg of lutein and 4mg of zeaxanthin isomers (with a minimum of 1mg of meso-zeaxanthin). This capsule contains beta carotene which the AREDS2 study excluded from its formula due to its link to an increased risk to lung cancer in smokers. So one to avoid if you currently are or have been a smoker.
Each capsule contains 30 IU of Vitamin E. Again a lot lower than the recommended dose of 400 IU in the AREDS2 study.
It also contains Sea Buckthorn Oil which the manufacturer claims provides a soothing lubrication for the eyes that helps reduce dry eye syndrome, strain and fatigue.
The capsules are free of artificial color, artificial flavor and preservatives but does contain gelatin so not vegetarian or vegan friendly.
Eye Promise Restore
This product contains a decent amount of zeaxanthin at 8mg. It also contains 4mg of lutein.
It has some vitamins and minerals as recommended in the AREDS2 study but once more the doses are not at the same strength: vitamin C (120mg), vitamin E (60IU) and 15mg of zinc.
There are 60 soft gels per pack. The pack makes no mention of whether there is any gelatin or not so I am unable to report if this product is vegetarian or vegan friendly.
Not Every Supplement Is Equal
There are certainly a lot of supplements out there for the eyes but their contents are definitely not the same. It seems a safer bet to buy those supplements that contain the ingredients that match (or as close as possible match) those as recommended by either the Waterford study or the AREDS2 study.
The Vision Max Saffron Plus Capsules for me are my preference because they contain the same doses of the carotenoids as recommended by the Waterford study. On top of that, the capsules contain all natural ingredients.
=> click here to purchase your first batch of capsules <=
As a closing note, please do not rely on this post as medical advice. I am not medically trained. I advise you to seek advice from your eye doctor as soon as possible if you are looking for help about an eye condition that you have.
If you have any comments about the contents of this post, please feel free to leave a comment below. Thank you.
Vision Max Saffron Plus$41
- A Good Formula
- 100% natural
- Beta-Carotene Free
- Formula does not match Waterford studies exactly
- Formula does not match AREDS2 study exactly
- Further testing on the benefits of saffron to eyesight still to be done