Study reveals B VITAMINS may reduce glaucoma risk

Study reveals B VITAMINS may reduce glaucoma risk

Tags: b vitamins , eye diseases , eye health , glaucoma , goodhealth , macular degeneration , natural cures , natural health , natural medicine , nutrients , prevention , remedies , research , Riboflavin , risk , senses , supplements , , thiamine , vitamin b1 , vitamin B2 , vitamins Glaucoma is a condition affecting the eyes that poses significant risks if left undetected and untreated. The condition is characterized by damage to the optic nerve that could potentially result in vision loss, often irreversible. Glaucoma becomes more prevalent with an aging population.

But recent studies have indicated that incorporating specific B vitamins into one’s diet may notably lower the likelihood of developing glaucoma. One such study published in Nature on April 12 looked into data from over 5,000 Americans aged 40 and older who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a comprehensive population-based study in the United States.

Its focus was on exploring whether the daily consumption of B vitamins, including B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B6 (pyridoxine), B12 (cobalamin) and the synthetic form of B9 (folic acid), could mitigate the risk of developing glaucoma.

The study authors from China found that the intake of vitamins B1 and B2 was associated with a decreased glaucoma among men. They also found that vitamin B2 showed a particularly notable effect, linked to a 28 percent reduction in glaucoma risk per one-milligram increase of riboflavin. “In our study, the relationship between vitamin B1, B2 intake, and self-reported glaucoma seemed more pronounced in males,” the researchers wrote.

In contrast, women did not observe the same glaucoma risk reduction with increased B vitamin intake. They further observed that in females, the association between vitamin B2 intake and glaucoma risk was non-linear– indicating a decrease in risk with higher intake. (Related: B vitamins are CRUCIAL to heart health, brain health and eye health .)

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Ophthalmologist Dr. Alina Djougarian told the Epoch Times that the findings of the Nature study, which drew from the robust NHANES dataset and its substantial sample size, corroborated previous research linking B vitamins to a diminished risk of glaucoma.

Nevertheless, the eye doctor at Northwell Health in New York state, who was not involved in the study, emphasized the necessity for large-scale, prospective studies with extensive follow-up periods to elucidate the impact of B vitamin supplementation on glaucoma progression and its long-term effects on optic nerve health. Long-term research needed to confirm efficacy of B vitamins for glaucoma treatment

Djougarian pointed out, however, that the dosages of B vitamins used in recent studies about glaucoma surpass the recommended daily limits – potentially posing toxicity hazards. “It is important to consult a physician before taking supplements,” she advised.

Meanwhile, ophthalmologist and glaucoma specialist Dr. Robert A. Honkanen highlighted the ambiguous nature of using vitamins for eye ailments, describing it as a “gray zone.” Despite certain vitamins being recommended to prevent macular degeneration, he stressed the absence of validated, long-term research confirming their efficacy for glaucoma treatment.

“While some vitamins possess antioxidant or neuroprotective properties, the definitive evidence supporting their benefits remains elusive,” explained the eye doctor at Stony Brook Medicine, also in New York state.

Given this uncertainty, Honkanen suggested exercising caution and seeking medical advice to mitigate the risk of overdosing, especially considering the potential effects on blood clotting associated with other vitamins, such as vitamin E. He also underscored the importance of a healthy lifestyle, comprising habits like refraining from smoking, regular physical activity, and maintaining a balanced diet, which has been demonstrated to lower the risk of glaucoma development.

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