The Treatment and Prevention of Macular Degeneration
If you’re at risk for age-related macular degeneration, you’ve probably already been told that there is no known cure. But did you know there are measures you can take to prevent or slow the progression of the disease? Macular degeneration, the number one cause of vision loss, is defined as the degeneration of the macula, which is the component of the retina that controls visual acuity. As it progresses, macular degeneration starts to cause blurred or wavy vision, and can eventually lead to severe vision loss or blindness.
There are two forms of macular degeneration: wet and dry. Dry macular degeneration is much more common, comprising approximately 90% of cases, and is usually less severe, although it can eventually progress into late-stage geriatric atrophy, which causes severe vision loss. Wet macular degeneration, although less common, tends to cause more severe vision loss. Regardless of the type, the primary symptom of macular degeneration is central vision loss: the loss of visual acuity in the center of your vision. Little yellow spots called drusen begin to appear on your macula, followed by blind spots in the center of your vision.
Although neither form of macular degeneration can be cured, fortunately, both forms of macular degeneration can be treated, and new research offers hope for better, more effective treatments. Many of the ways to treat macular degeneration revolve around making healthy, conscientious lifestyle choices. This includes a healthy diet, exercise, and making sure to get plenty of vitamins and minerals, as well as quitting smoking if you currently smoke. Besides quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy diet is potentially the largest lifestyle adjustment you can make to treat macular degeneration, as vitamins and minerals are essential and being overweight or obese can make the disease more severe.
Macular Degeneration: Treatment and Prevention
One study demonstrated that among those with a high risk of severe macular degeneration, an antioxidant supplement combined with zinc reduced the participants’ risk by 25 percent. The supplement contained a carefully calibrated mixture of micronutrients: vitamin C, vitamin E, beta carotene, and zinc (although supplements containing beta carotene may be contraindicated in current or recent smokers). Dark, leafy greens, fish, and fish oil supplements have also been shown to be helpful.
In addition to diet, exercise, and nutritional supplements, Dr. George Rozakis, who is a pioneer in the field of ocular sciences and an expert in hormonal sciences, believes that optimizing hormone balance may also have an impact on the disease. Studies have shown that patients with macular degeneration also have unusually low hormone levels, especially DHEA. Dr. Rozakis posed a theory regarding macular degeneration, hormones, and drusen. He posits that the drusen occur as the result of the body trying ineffectually to make hormones from cholesterol.
If Dr. Rozakis’s theory is correct, it could mean that bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) could help in the treatment or prevention of macular degeneration. Biodentical hormones are identical in structure to your body’s naturally occurring hormones, making them the safest, most effective choice when it comes to hormone therapy. The experts at BodyLogicMD can help you optimize both hormone and nutrition levels with targeted BHRT and pharmaceutical-grade supplements. Protect your vision by taking steps to prevent or treat age-related macular degeneration in its early stages—before it’s too late.