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Mediterranean diet may protect against advanced age-related macular degeneration

12 Sep 2018

High adherence to the Mediterranean diet cuts the risk of developing advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD) by about 41 percent, a study has found.

Researchers pooled data from two European population-based prospective cohort studies evaluating the associations between eye diseases and nutritional factors. The Rotterdam study I (RS-I) involved 4,446 adults aged ≥55 years from the Netherlands, whereas the Alienor study included 550 individuals aged 73 years from France. All participants had complete ophthalmologic and dietary data.

Assessments were performed approximately every 5 years over a 21-year period in RS-I and every 2 years over a 4-year period in Alienor. Adherence to the Mediterranean diet was measured using a 9-component score (MeDi score) based on consumption of vegetables, fruits, legumes, cereals, fish, meat, dairy products, alcohol and the monounsaturated-to-saturated fatty acids ratio.

A total of 155 adults developed advanced incident AMD, 117 from RS-I and 38 from Alienor. The mean follow-up was 9.9 and 4.1 years in the respective cohorts.

Multivariate Cox proportional hazard models revealed that compared with low MeDi scores (0–3), high MeDi scores (6–9) were significantly associated with a reduced risk of advanced AMD (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.59; 95 percent CI, 0.37–0.95; p=0.04 for trend).

The present data indicate that a diet favouring healthy, nutrient-rich foods—such as fruits, vegetables, legumes and fish—may play an important role in the prevention of AMD, researchers said.

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Tristan Manalac, 09 Apr 2019
Parafoveal flow and vessel density (VD) are significantly reduced in individuals with early cognitive impairment and may serve as early biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease (AD), according to a recent study.
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