Eyesight is commonly viewed as one of the most valuable human senses. Therefore, the eyes are among the most important organs for preventative care. All parts of the eye are extremely delicate. Our bodies have several ways to protect them. The eyeball is protected by the eye socket, the bony structure in the skull. The visible part of the eye is protected by the eyelids and eyelashes. They protect the eyes from dirt, dust, sand particles and even harmful bright light out of the eye. Tears also form a protection to the eyes. Tears not only provide lubrication to the eyes but also to clean out dirt, dust, and other irritants that get past the defences of the eyelids and eyelashes. Apart from that, tears can also protect the eyes against infection. Inside the eyes, our retina is protected by three carotenoid pigments known as lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin. Lutein and zeaxanthins are present in high concentrations especially in the macula and work as filters to protect the eyes from blue light and oxidative stress-induced damage.
Our eyes need to stay moist in order for them to stay healthy. Normally people will blink every 10 seconds. When we blink, our eyes release a “tear film” that coats the eyes and soothes them. With each blink, our eyelids will spread a layer of mucous, oil and tears across the front surface of the eye known as cornea. Any excess tears in the eyes flow into small drainage ducts in the inner corners of the eyelids, which will drain into the back of the nose.
However, when we are using a tablet, computer, smartphone or watching TV, we do not blink as often as we normally would. Less blinking leads to drier eyes. Some of the symptoms associated with dry eyes are itchy, gritty, red, stinging eyes, excessive tearing and blurry vision. With the surge in virtual connections for the past 2 years, the use of digital devices has nearly doubled overnight, according to Nielsen Global Media. The dramatic surge in screen time calls for a timely increase in vision protection. Other common causes of dry eyes include air-conditioning, cigarette smoke, low humidity, sun, wind or pollutants, certain medications such as anti-histamines - used in cold or allergies, contact lenses and hormonal changes in menopausal women.
The widespread use of digital devices has led to a significant rise in the exposure of our eyes to short-wavelength visible light, particularly blue light. Studies have shown that exposure of our eyes to blue-light emitted from electronic devices, even for exposures as short as 1 hour, may cause reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation that can lead to inflammations and dry eye disease. Furthermore, the short-wavelength blue light can reach the inner lining of the retina and damage the light-sensitive cells, putting us at risk of early age-related macular degeneration and eventually lead to loss of eyesight.
Formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) can cause oxidative stress on the eyes surface. It has been demonstrated that oxidative stress damages the ocular surface and subsequently, leads to inflammations and dry eye disease. When there is inflammation in your tear glands (lacrimal glands), cornea or conjunctiva, the body may not produce sufficient tears or the tears produced do not contain the right mixture of water, oils and salts. These changes can lead to dry eyes. When the eyes are not well-lubricated, they are not as efficient at washing away dirt, dust and germs.
The tears are important to carry oxygen, nutrients, antibodies, white blood cells, enzymes and water to the cornea since our cornea has no blood supply. Small cuts on the cornea or infections will more likely to develop if the eyes do not produce sufficient tears. Stress to the eyes, whether due to infection or a scratch on the cornea will trigger the body to launch an immune response at the eyes. Inflammation at the eyes is an attempt our body is trying to heal our eyes. However, it can make dry eyes worse. Dry eyes can also make eye inflammation worse. What may seem as a nuisance at first, can turn into a serious problem. Untreated, severe dry eyes can lead to eye inflammation, abrasion on the cornea, corneal ulcers and subsequently serious, irreparable vision impairment.
Eye drops such as lubricating eye drops or artificial tears eye drops are frequently used in dry eyes. Artificial tears can be very soothing if we suffer from dry eyes. They temporarily restore the moisture in the eyes. However, constant use of artificial tears can cause our natural tears to wash away, together with the natural protection it offers to our eyes. Artificial tears are not a lasting cure to dry eyes because they only relieve the symptoms of dry eyes temporarily. They lack nutrients, antibodies and the protection our eyes need against free radicals, which subsequently leads to oxidative stress and inflammation at the tear glands.
Nutrition has become the forefront to support healthy ocular health. Xanthophyll carotenoids, such as astaxanthin, lutein and zeaxanthin are specially recognized for their ability to provide powerful ocular nutrition and are the mainstreams of vision care. Although there is no recommended dietary intake for lutein and zeaxanthin, the amount needed depends on the amount of stress the body has to endure. Recently, maqui berries are in the spotlight in addressing dry eye symptoms caused by high screen time and environmental factors.
Maqui berries are native berries that grow wild in the forests of Patagonia in Chile and Argentina. They contain the richest identified natural source of delphinidins, a type of plant pigment that impart the very dark purple colour of the berries. Delphinidins are characterized by interesting antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties with one of the highest antioxidant properties of any fruits known to men. They are the most effective free radical scavengers that are able to remove 5 types of free radicals in the body.
MaquiBright is the only patented and effective standardised maqui berry extract that provides rich purified flavonoids that contain a minimum of 25% delphinidins and 35% of total anthocyanins. MaquiBright delphinidins show the highest absorption rate compared to other anthocyanins such as blackberry and blueberry. It has the ability to penetrate into the cells of the lacrimal. Chronic oxidative stress from the environment causes the tear glands to malfunction and not be able to produce sufficient tears. Delphinidns from maqui berries trap free radicals, reduce oxidative stress and restore tears production in the lacrimal gland. Journal of Functional Food published a study in 2014 to prove the effectiveness of maqui berries in restoring tears production in a rat dry eye model.
Subsequently, 2 clinical trials were conducted on humans to further substantiate its effectiveness in humans.
Schirmer’s test – Conducted in subjects who are suffering from eye dryness, who were exposed to more than four hours of screen time at work daily. MaquiBright shows improvement in eye dryness and fatigue before and after the exposure to screen time, as compared to placebo.
Dry Eye-related Quality of Life Score questionnaire (DEQS) - Conducted on a similar group of subjects had shown 57% decrease in bothersome ocular discomforts such as gritty eyes, soreness and red eyes.
Spending too many hours staring at a screen can cause eye strain. You tend to blink less while staring at the blue light from a screen, and the movement of the screen makes your eyes work harder to focus. The potential effects of screen time are dry eyes, eye fatigue, loss of focus flexibility, nearsightedness and retinal damage. Digital devices release blue light, which can reach the inner lining of the back of your eye (retina). Studies show that blue light can damage light-sensitive cells in the retina. This can lead to early age-related macular degeneration, which can lead to loss of eyesight.
Carotenoids such as lutein and zeaxanthin are well-known for their effect in protecting the eyes from blue light. The higher the exposure to blue light, the lower the MPOD. MPOD (Macular Pigment Optical Density) is a measurement of the levels of the carotenoids in the macula. The higher the level of MPOD, the better the improvement in photo-stress recovery, contrast sensitivity and reduction in glare disability.
Macula is responsible for the central vision, most of our colour vision and fine details of what we see. The macula is also rich in lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin, the yellow pigments which are found in the central retina. Lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin are the only nutrients deposited specifically into the eyes to absorb harmful blue light. Because the human body does not naturally produce lutein or zeaxanthins, it is important to get these nutrients through supplements and foods.
Choosing the right lutein supplement that provides all three carotenoids is essential for a macula full protection. Lutemax 2020 is a natural extract extracted from marigold flowers, containing all three macular pigments in a 5-to-1 ratio. The deposition of these macular pigments is highly specific: lutein is deposited at the outer-most layer of the macula, followed by zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin in the very centre. Lutemax 2020 ensures optimal levels of all three carotenoids and is important for visual health and function. Often lacking from most eye-lutein supplements is meso-zeaxanthin. Meso-zeaxanthin is the most
important carotenoid because it controls our sharpest and colourful vision. While most carotenoids contain only lutein and zeaxanthin, Lutemax 2020 is the most comprehensive carotenoids that has been shown to improve the innermost layer of the macula and maximise the protection against high-energy blue light.
a) Better bioavailability: LAMA 1, an acronym for Lutein, Vision and Mental Acuity, a study that proved Lutemax 2020 increases serum levels of lutein and zeaxanthin rapidly and is associated with an increase in MPOD as fast as 8-weeks.
b) Improves visual performance: Lutemax 2020 consistently improves contrast sensitivity, photo-stress recovery and disability glare thresholds in multiple studies.
c) B.L.U.E study: The first human clinical trial in young, healthy subjects to demonstrate improvements associated with prolonged blue light exposure from digital devices, including eye strain and fatigue, headache frequency and glare tolerance.
d) Supports mood and reduces stress: Lutemax 2020 significantly reduces stress, serum cortisol and symptoms associated with emotional stress. This highlighted the importance of macular carotenoids for daily stress support.
e) Cognitive support: Lutemax 2020 increases brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). BDNF is the key molecule that is related to learning and memory. Increase in BDNF level improves memory, sustained attention, psychomotor speed and processing speed.
f) Sleep quality: Lutemax 2020 significantly improves sleep quality in subjects exposed to prolonged blue light from digital devices.
g) Improves skin health: The Beautiful Skin Forever study proved that Lutemax 2020 improves overall skin tone, skin lightening/brightening and skin protection in healthy adults with dry skin.
Eating a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, protein and healthy fats will provide you with all the nutrients your eyes — and the rest of your body — need for optimal health. However, you will need to take supplements if you suspect you’re missing any nutrients in your diet. Or, when you are facing eye discomforts such as vision stress, eye strain, blurry vision and dry eye due to long exposure to screen.
Kordel’s new innovative eye supplement, V-Fresh combines 2 most recognized patented eye nutrients, i.e. Maquibright and Lutemax 2020 to help increase the production of natural tear, maintain eye function, protect against harmful light and reduce the development of age-related degenerative diseases of the eye.