Macular degeneration, also referred to as age-related macular degeneration, is a disease of the eye that causes cells in the macula to die and may eventually result in blindness. The macula is the part of your eye that gives you the ability to make out details clearly. When the disease starts, sufferers may not even be aware that they have it, as its progression is slow. Macular degeneration falls into two forms. The dry form is identified by yellow-white, round spots in the back of the eye. The wet form involves the growth of abnormal blood vessels under your retina’s center. While no one cause has been pinned down for this visual disorder, age, gender, iris color, obesity, genetics, race, some prescription drug medications and smoking may be contributing factors. If you have been diagnosed with macular degeneration, your ophthalmologist may recommend medication, therapy or even surgery. You may want to consider the use of alternative remedies, as well, if you are in the early stages of the disease.
1. Take bilberry, which is best known for its abilities to aid in improving vision. Bilberry comes from a shrub that is common to parts of Europe and contains chemicals called anthocyanosides that work to reverse cell damage. You can get standardized bilberry extract in capsule form and should take the dosage suggested by the product you choose. You should avoid bilberry if you have diabetes. If you are on blood thinners, you need to speak with your doctor before taking bilberry, as it could counter the effects of your medication.
2. Add more green, leafy vegetables, such as spinach. collards and mustard greens, to your diet. They contain lutein, a potent antioxidant that can help improve your vision and guard your retina from sunlight damage. If you don’t like these foods, you can always get lutein in supplement form and take the daily dosage recommended by the product you choose.
3. Drink a little red wine on occasion, as it has antioxidant powers, if you consume it in moderation. Overdoing it, however, will do more harm than good. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding or are addicted to alcohol, you should not drink wine. If you are on prescription medication or being treated for a serious medical condition, you need to speak with your doctor to see if drinking red wine is safe for you, as it could interact adversely with some medications.
4. Consider ginkgo biloba, which may help you if you are in the beginning stages of macular degeneration. Ginkgo biloba, which contains the antioxidants terpenoids and flavonoids, comes from the leaves of the most ancient living tree species and has been used to treat circulatory conditions and other health problems. You can get it in capsule or tincture form and should take it as directed by the product you are using.You should not take ginkgo biloba if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or are taking Cylosporine, aspirin, blood thinners, Trazodone, diuretics, antidepressants or anticonvulsants.
5. Sip some chrysanthemum tea, which is made from dried chrysanthemum flowers. It is grown and used in China and other areas of Asia for its medicinal properties. You can get chrysanthemum tea where Asian products can be found. Be sure to check with your doctor before drinking chrysanthemum tea, if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, are on prescription drugs or are being treated for a serious health issue.