Sources of Lutein & Zeaxanthin
- Supplements of lutein and zeaxanthin are readily found in the marketplace. Find them together or separately. Recommended dose for lutein is 20 mgs and 6 to 10 mgs of zeaxanthin, according to the American Optometric Association. Many of these supplements include other beneficial eye nutrients as well as vitamin C which aid in good vision.
- Leafy greens have lots of lutein and zeaxanthin.
The greatest source of lutein and zeaxanthin is found in leafy dark greens such as spinach, swiss chard, kale, parsley and romaine. The American Macular Degeneration Foundation recommends eating vegetables raw or lightly steamed. Sweet potatoes, tomatoes, carrots, corn, okra and peppers rank high on the list for content of these two nutrients.
- Peaches, tangerines, oranges, papayas, mangoes and apricots are the best fruits for lutein and zeaxanthin. Eat fruits raw to get the maximum benefits. Cantaloupe is the melon with the richest source of lutein with its bright orange color. Cut fruit up and have it readily available for snacks.
- Enjoy pasta made from spinach.
Though vegetables and fruits are rich sources of lutein and zeaxanthin, many carbohydrates boast of high content. Eat cereals made with corn and pastas made from spinach, corn and egg yokes. Enjoy corn tortillas filled with vegetables and get a high does of zeaxanthin and lutein. Corn bread, delicious hot out of the oven, contains lutein and zeaxanthin.
Spices and Snacks
- Chips and salsa is a great snack.
Keep a bowl of salsa made from tomoatoes, peppers and onions in the refrigerator for snacking with tortilla chips and vegetables, and get the lutein and zeaxanthin benefit from both. A bowl of popcorn is always a welcome snack with a high content of both these nutrients. Season your food with marjoram, curry, oregano, basil and thyme.
- According to North Chicago VA Medical Center in 2004, lutein not only helps in preventing ARMD (age related macular degeneration) but actually reverses symptoms. In a study done by the American Optometric Association a diet rich in lutein and zeaxanthin was associated with a lower occurrence of cataracts.