Sunglasses Guide: Protect Your Vision

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A different serious terrific treatise pertaining to vision health.

sunglasses guideSunglasses are the primary way to protect your eyes from the hazards of excess sunlight. Ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun can cause cataracts and macular degeneration, serious eye diseases. It can also cause growths on the eye, eye cancer, retinal burns, and other types of damage.[link to main article] UV light damage in cumulative, but a life-long habit of wearing sunglasses in the sun will help prevent problems.

Good sunglasses do not need to cost a lot of money. In fact, the price tag does not indicate the lens’s ability to block damaging UV light. Neither does the darkness of the lenses. The item’s tag should contain the following information:

•    Blocks at least 99% of UV rays, or
•    UV absorption up to 400nm

Coatings or chemicals are added to the lenses to improve their effectiveness.
Any style will do, but the best style is a wrap-around type. They should wrap around the temples to prevent sunlight from pouring in. Ski goggles wrap around very well, and they should be worn by every outdoor winter sports participant.

People who wear prescription glasses should get transitional lenses or prescription sunglasses. Alternatively, most drugstores carry larger glasses that are designed to go over the prescription glasses. These are designed not to rub against the prescription lenses, and they are usually the wrap-around style.

You can check whether they block enough light by looking at yourself in a mirror while trying them on. If you can easily see your eyes, they are likely not dark enough.
Polarized lenses are best for reducing reflected glare, such as from snow, water, sand or pavement. This feature is highly recommended for use while driving a land or water vehicle. Mirror coatings are a stylish way to cut back on glare, but check the label for the actual UV blocking.

Some lenses are dark at the top and light at the bottom (for driving); dark on top and bottom and light in the middle (for water and snow). Choose a lens with a gradient feature only if you need them for this purpose.

Buy several pairs of sunglasses and keep at least one handy anytime you go outside in the sun. The value of preventing cumulative eye by wearing sunglasses cannot be underestimated.

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Sigmaceutical is passionate about spreading health and strongly advocates the idea of strengthening the body’s defenses against sickness and disease through world class nutritional supplement formulations.

Try Sigmaceutical Lutein Vision Support today!

Saffron Helps Macular Degeneration in Six Research Studies

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An innovative notable observation pertaining to vision health.

saffron crocus flowerSeveral studies have indicated saffron’s power to protect the eye from the effects of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD). This precious yellow & red spice contains the carotenoids crocin and crocetin, antioxidants that appear to protect the retina. Visual acuity has been shown to be improved in Macular Degeneration patients who take a saffron supplement. These supplements may also increase blood flow to the retinal area, improve light sensitivity, and reduce photo-oxidative damage.

Saffron comes from a crocus flower, and it is a popular food flavoring. These tiny, feather-light stigmas and styles are the most expensive spice in the world; however, saffron supplements contain a measured and effective dose in a convenient capsule form.

A 2016 study1 found that the health of retinal cells and retinal photoreceptors cells was improved by saffron supplements. The researchers believe that saffron was able to inhibit retina-damaging bioelectrical currents.

One small study2 of ARMD patients found that 20 mg of saffron per day increased visual acuity. The effect took place in just three months. These changes were attributed to improvements in the retina. Stopping the supplements stopped the improvements.

Another study3 looked at visual acuity and retinal light sensitivity. Early ARMD patients had improvements while taking saffron. A related study found this to be the case regardless of genetic heritage4.

The Snellen Chart is used to measure visual acuity or sharpness of vision. Patients with early ARMD who took saffron had improvements of one full line on this chart, a 14% improvement.5 Another paper6 found an improvement of two lines on the Snellen Chart.

The post Saffron Helps Macular Degeneration in Six Research Studies appeared first on Eye conditions, eye care, & how to support healthy vision naturally.

Sigmaceutical is passionate about spreading health and strongly advocates the idea of strengthening the body’s defenses against sickness and disease through world class nutritional supplement formulations.

Try Sigmaceutical Lutein Vision Support today!

Protect Your Vision With Different Lens Coatings

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A different worthy remark on vision health.

Protect Your Vision With Different Lens Coatings

From the early days of purely glass lenses to the advanced materials we use now, the technology in prescription lenses is constantly improving.

Today, special lens coatings improve and protect our vision in ways we could only dream of before.

Anti-reflective Coating Eliminates Lens Reflections

Have you ever noticed a bright glare on a window pane or reflective surface? If present on your eyeglass lenses, reflected light can be both a distraction and a potentially dangerous obstruction to your vision. Anti-reflective coating can applied to block reflections from both the front and the rear surface of your lenses. With these reflections gone, you’ll be able to see more clearly and your lenses will look nearly invisible, allowing everyone to see your beautiful eyes!

Some lens materials are manufactured with anti-reflective coating by default, while others must be applied afterward. Ask your optometrist and optician about how to protect your new lenses from reflections!

Advanced Technology Protects Lenses From Scratches

Nothing is scratch-proof, but there are coatings to help make lenses more resistant to scratching. Lenses can be treated with a scratch-resistant coating to protect them from scuffs caused by all of life’s little mishaps. Children may especially benefit from such coatings as they are prone to accidents.

Even if your lenses have scratch-resistant coating, always be sure to maintain proper care for your glasses. Be sure to store them in a cushioned case when not in use, and always clean them with a microfiber cloth and a cleaning solution recommended by your optician.

UV Protection Isn’t Just For Sunglasses

We all understand how important UV protection is for our sunglasses, but this protection is just as important for our everyday lenses. Prolonged UV exposure can lead to a condition called photokeratitis—a sunburn on the eyes often called snow blindness— or have more serious consequences to our vision health including macular degeneration, retinal damage, or cataracts.

Many modern lenses are built with UV protection, but others require an additional coating to ensure 100 percent of UV rays are blocked.

Blue light emitted from the sun and electronic devices such as smartphones and computer screens also pose a threat to our vision health. Looking at screens for an extensive period of time can result in digital eye strain, causing vision fatigue and sometimes annoyances like eye twitching or red eyes.

While there are a number of things you can do to gain relief from digital eye strain, lenses are available that reduce the eye’s exposure to blue light. If you look at screens extensively for work or personal use, ask your optometrist if these lenses are right for you.

See Clearly With Your New Lenses

If you wear glasses, your lenses are the window to your world. We provide our patients with the latest in eyeglass lens technology to suit their unique vision health needs. If you have any questions about which lens coatings may benefit your vision, let us know! We’d love to help you find the lenses that are right for you.

Thank you for being our valued patient and friend.

Sigmaceutical is passionate about spreading health and strongly advocates the idea of strengthening the body’s defenses against sickness and disease through world class nutritional supplement formulations.

Try Sigmaceutical Lutein Vision Support today!

Sun Protection for the Eyes: Prevent Eye Injuries, Cataracts, ARMD, Surfer’s Eye

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A further outstanding treatise about vision health.

sun protection glasses hat sunscreenThe sun sustains life, but it also can harm our eyes. Unsafe sun exposure causes or may contribute to several eye conditions and diseases. It can also cause eye injuries. Earth’s ozone layer absorbs most of the ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun, but chemicals have damaged it. Therefore, we must take extra precautions to prevent cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, ocular melanoma (eye cancer), and eye injuries such as pterygium (Surfer’s Eye), photokeratitis (snow blindness), and flash blindness. The sun is also a driving hazard when low on the horizon.

The body contains its own “sunscreen,” which is melanin. Dark-skinned people have more melanin and therefore, more built-in sun protection. The eye also contains melanin, but the amount reduces with age. Also, people with darker irises have more built-in solar protection than people with lighter eyes – blue, green, hazel and, in many cases of albinism, pink.

UV rays cause oxidation. For some, over time, retinal cells may be gradually destroyed by ongoing exposure to the sun’s rays. In seniors, the antioxidant defense system becomes less efficient. Lower antioxidants in the eyes are believed to be an important contributing factor to eye diseases later in life.

Balancing the Need for Sunlight

Some exposure to sunlight is necessary for good health. Exposure to sunlight improves mood.1 It regulates sleep and wake cycles.

The body manufactures vitamin D in response to sunlight. Vitamin D deficiency has become widespread2 as electronics and workplaces have kept more people indoors. Large amounts of vitamin D are produced when exposing bare skin to sunlight for half the amount of time it takes to turn the skin pink. This might mean 15 minutes for a very light-skinned person, or several hours for a dark-skinned person. Vitamin D cannot be obtained in sufficient quantities through diet, but a supplement can compensate in cases of deficiency or lack of access to sufficient amounts of sunlight.

Children who spend most of their time indoors are more likely to develop the eye condition myopia – nearsightedness – and require corrective lenses. There are two theories: too much close-up work, or too little dopamine, an important brain chemical. Spending time in sunlight causes the brain to produce more dopamine. This is especially a problem in parts of Asia, where schoolchildren spend long days studying.

However, too much of a good thing can hurt you. Excessive sun exposure can cause a variety of unwanted eye diseases and conditions.


Description: A cataract clouds the eye’s lens. Cataracts are the major cause of vision loss in the United States. This disease strikes mostly people over age 40, affecting approximately 22% of Caucasians by their 60’s, and 70% by age 80.3 The clouding gets worse over time. Symptoms are blurring, haze, less color perception, impaired night vision, halos, and difficulty with depth perception (increasing the chances of falling). Causes may include UV light exposure, genetic causes, past eye surgery, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, smoking, poor diet (lack of antioxidants), poor absorption, medications (corticosteroids, statins, hormone replacement therapy), high alcohol consumption, family history and high myopia.4 Cataracts are typically treated by replacing the lens with an artificial lens under local anesthetic in an outpatient facility. Cataract patients who wish to delay or avoid surgery sometimes try homeopathic eye drops such as cineraria. This can be effective, particularly in the early stages of cataracts.

Solar Safety: Exposure to UV light is a known cause of cataracts that you can control. Wear quality sunglasses that block 99-100% of UV rays or say “UV absorption up to 400nm.” If you wear prescription glasses, get transitional lenses, prescription sunglasses or larger “goggle-style” glasses that go over your prescription glasses. Contact lens wearers need sunglasses. Wear a wide-brimmed hat outdoors. If you have had cataract surgery, the doctor may have used a UV-absorbent lens, but wear sunglasses anyway for thorough protection.

See Our Guide to Sunglasses

Pterygium – Surfer’s Eye

Pterygium surfer's eye injury


Description: Pterygium is a growth of pink, fleshy tissue that appears on the white of the eye. It typically starts close to the nose and grows toward the eye’s center. This slow-growing triangular-shaped tissue may eventually cover the pupil. It is called Surfer’s Eye because spending a lot of time outdoors is the major risk factor. Sunlight is the most likely culprit, but wind and sand may also be factors. In the US, the overall rate is 2%, and 4% in California and Florida. Most of the time, it does not need treatment, but it can be irritating and eventually affect vision. In some cases, surgery may be warranted; however, it tends to grow back quickly. Eye drops can help alleviate associated irritation. Learn more about Pteryguim.

Solar Safety: Wear wrap-around sunglasses or tinted goggles to help prevent sun, wind and grit from causing an eye injury.

Photokeratitis – Snow Blindness (Also Eye Injuries From Water & Sand)

Description: The Inuit were well aware that exposure to sunlight reflecting off snow could cause eye injuries. They fashioned caribou antlers into snow goggles. Photokeratitis is like a sunburn on the eye. Ultraviolet rays damage the cornea and the conjunctiva. Boaters and beach lovers should also be alert, because the sun’s rays reflect off water and sand too. Tanning lamps and tanning beds, and welding arcs can also cause photokeratitis. The eyes become painful, red, irritated, watery, sensitive to bright light, blurry, swollen, and/or have a gritty feeling. The victim may also have headaches, see halos, have eyelid twitching, have small pupils and sometimes temporary vision loss. If symptoms appear, get out of the light, remove contact lenses and rest. Place a cold washcloth over the eyes and take pain relievers. Use artificial tears. Do not rub. The eyes will usually heal on their own in a day or two, but an ophthalmologist can be consulted.

Solar Safety: Tinted ski goggles or sunglasses protect the eyes in cold climates. Boaters and beach visitors should wear sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat. Always use eye protection when welding or tanning to prevent eye injuries.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration and Sunlight

Description: Some researchers have linked sun exposure – even at younger ages – with a higher risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (ARMD). A large study5 found that teens and adults who spent five or more hours per day outdoors before age 40 had double the risk of getting early-onset ARDM.

Solar Safety: Protect the eyes and skin by wearing a hat, sunglasses and sunscreen when outdoors. Sunlight is contraindicated for ARMD patients who recently had photodynamic therapy to treat their condition.

Eye Cancer – Ocular Melanoma

Description: Cancer of the uvea is rare, but it is similar to skin cancer, whose primary cause is exposure to UV light. The choroid contains the same type of pigments as skin cells, and this is where most ocular melanoma develops. The uvea is the middle layer tissue under the white part of the eyeball. Ocular melanoma is usually symptomless in its early stages, but it can be picked up on during an eye exam. Those with light-colored eyes and of Caucasian descent are at greater risk.6

Solar Safety: Melanoma risk increases with sun exposure. Protect the eyes and skin from excessive sun exposure. Wearing sunglasses and a hat when outdoors in sunlight helps protect the eyes and the skin on the head and face. Sunscreen should never be put on the eyes or eyelids, but should be applied liberally to the face and ears every 2 hours when outdoors. Use waterproof sunscreen that won’t run into the eyes. Avoid tanning beds or wear tanning goggles every time.

Flash Blindness Eye Injuries

Description: The retina can be damaged or even destroyed by very bright light. During solar eclipses, children are especially vulnerable due to their impulsiveness and very clear lenses. Looking directly at the sun for a period of time can also cause eye injuries, especially when magnified with a telescope or binoculars.

Solar Safety: Children and adults should watch solar eclipses on television. Planetariums and science centers can safely project an eclipse. Avoid looking directly at the sun with the naked eye or through binoculars.

Glare While Driving

Description: When the sun is at a low angle, a driver can be suddenly blinded when the vehicle turns toward the sun.7 This problem is amplified if the windshield is dirty.

Solar Safety: Use the sun visor. Reduce glare by wearing polarized sunglasses. Reduce speed and turn the headlights on so other drivers can see you. Keep the windshield clean on both sides.

Protecting your eyes from sunlight is your primary defense against a long list of problems. Keep protective sunglasses in your vehicle, in your bag, and near the door. Wear sunglasses and a hat, and use sunscreen regularly. Damage from UV light is cumulative. Make sure children and teens take sun protection seriously, and require them to follow solar safety instructions.

Nutrients That Help Protect Against Sun Damage

Two great carotenoid antioxidants that help protect against sun damage are lutein and zeaxanthin. They are both found in the retina and lenses of the eyes. By filtering UV and blue light, which is destructive to retinal cells, zeaxanthin and lutein act as a sort of built-in sunscreen. They also act as powerful antioxidants helping to neutralize the damaging effects of free radicals and oxidative stress. Lutein is abundant in leafy green vegetables and yellow vegetables such as corn. Lutein supplements can be made from bright yellow marigold flowers. Zeaxanthin is found in orange food such as saffron and oranges, and in green vegetables like peas, broccoli, spinach and kale. If sufficient amounts cannot be obtained from the diet, supplementation may be necessary. See more about carotenoids for the eyes.


The post Sun Protection for the Eyes: Prevent Eye Injuries, Cataracts, ARMD, Surfer’s Eye appeared first on Eye conditions, eye care, & how to support healthy vision naturally.

Sigmaceutical is passionate about spreading health and strongly advocates the idea of strengthening the body’s defenses against sickness and disease through world class nutritional supplement formulations.

Try Sigmaceutical Lutein Vision Support today!

What Can Statins Do for Dry AMD?

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A fresh notable piece of writing in relation to vision health.

Statins are drugs that typically lower a person’s cholesterol levels by blocking a substance that aids the production of cholesterol in the body. Some of the more well-known statin drugs include atorvastatin Lipitor, rosuvastatin Crestor, and simvastatin Zocor – all of which have been discovered to have the ability to eliminate fatty deposits that have accumulated behind the retina.

A group of researchers from Harvard Medical School and the University of Crete recently conducted studies on the effects of statins on patients with dry age-related macular degeneration. The findings, which were published in the online medical journal, EBioMedicine, present a potentially viable treatment to dry AMD.

One of the research leaders, Dr. Demetrios Vavvas of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary mentioned a crucial factor in the efficacy of this treatment: dosage. He says that a high dose of statins is required to bring about the regression of lipid deposits in the eye.

Can Surgery Address AMD?

While there is no real cure to wet or dry age-related macular degeneration, laser surgery can sometimes slow down the process of central vision loss. Getting the surgery in the early stages of wet AMD is crucial in the preventing the progression of blindness.

In order to find out about treatments that can prevent further deterioration of your eyesight, seek the advice of the reliable eye care experts of EyeCare 20/20, today.


Sigmaceutical is passionate about spreading health and strongly advocates the idea of strengthening the body’s defenses against sickness and disease through world class nutritional supplement formulations.

Try Sigmaceutical Lutein Vision Support today!