Why Is Lutein So Important For Health?
You may have heard of something called “the eye vitamin”. Lutein is a lesser known cousin of beta-carotene and vitamin A, but it sure has some amazing properties that are known for preventive various eye diseases, type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, breast cancer, and heart diseases.
What is Lutein?
Simply put, Lutein is one of 600 known Carotenoids that occur naturally. It is a phytonutrient and is synthesized only in plants. High quantities of lutein can be found in green leafy vegetables. Lutein is a color pigment and occurs in the human eye in the retina, where it is accumulated.
What can lutein do?
Improves visual function
Because of the increase in pigmentation its presence brings about, lutein improves our ability to see. Lutein is mainly present in our retina and lens and reduction in lutein levels can lead to degeneration of our vision.
Lutein mainly blocks ultraviolent blue lights from reaching the retina and reduces risk of damage in our eyes.
Acts as an antioxidant
Antioxidants are linked with prevention of various diseases, and regular intake helps our body eliminate the harmful oxidants present in our body. Lutein acts as an antioxidant that may interfere with our DNA and potentially cause Cancer, and very often genetic mutation.
Prevents eye-related medical conditions
Apart from contributing to good vision, Lutein also prevents potentially dangerous eye conditions like cataracts, retinitis pigmentosa, and macular degeneration in the eye.
Prevents other syndromes
A reduction in Lutein levels may be a reason for heart diseases, and breast and colon cause. Lutein prevents type 2 diabetes.
Boosts your immunity
Lutein is also known for giving a boost to our immunity system. The nutrient contributes in keeping our busy immune system in good working condition.
Gives you healthy skin
The pigment is one of the reasons for healthy, glowing skin with no trace of skin diseases. Since it is a carotenoid, it helps keep your skin healthy.
Contributes to healthy blood and tissues
Lutein helps in healthy blood generation and supports the growth of healthy tissues.
Sources of Lutein
Moms are right when they tell you to eat up your greens. Green vegetables are packed with nutrients, and vitamins needed in our body. In fact, we may not even be aware of how many nutrients we are reaping the benefits of when we eat up those healthy vegetables.
Lutein is present in high amounts in almost all vegetables but the best sources of Lutein are spinach, broccoli, lettuce, peas, asparagus, cucumber, Brussels, kale, zucchini to name a few.
You will be surprised to know that even eggs are a good source of Lutein. If you are eating corn, pistachios you are absorbing the goodness of lutein.
If you’re not getting enough Lutein from your food, you can consume lutein through supplements. Most multivitamins contain lutein and these are easily available at any medical shop around the corner. It is a good idea to combine vegetables and supplements so that you get a dose of lutein every day!
Are you getting enough Lutein?
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