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Caffeine May Help Prevent Cataracts

February 15, 2009

Your morning cup of coffee may do more that help you keep your eyes open.  It may protect them as well! Tea and coffee alkaloids may have an anti- cataract effect on your eye’s natural lens.  Exposure to the sun’s uv rays generates compounds called free radicals.  These free radicals may have harmful effects on our bodies, including the formation of cataracts.

According to Eye Smart, a public awareness campaign that encourages Americans to take charge of their eye health, caffeinee inhibits the formation of these free radicals.  A study conducted by the University of Maryland, Baltimore tested caffeine’s effect on cataract formation.  Mouse lenses were exposed to UV light and those that were also exposed to caffeinee did not develop cataracts.  The group not exposed to caffeinee did develop cataracts.  They concluded that caffeinee did in fact counteract the effects of UV light on the lens.  Obviously these results warrant further study, but it is not hard to imagine a caffeinee drop that may one day be prescribed to prevent cataract formation.
In the meantime, enjoy that cup of coffee or tea, you may be doing your eyes a favor as well!

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