Bright vegetables protect eyes from ageing

New York: Brightly coloured vegetables are good for the sight and may even help fight eyesight degeneration caused by ageing.

Scientists at the University of Winconsin have found that brightly-coloured yellow and green vegetables contain chemicals which can help protect the eyes against damage in later life.

Eating lots of vegetables such as peas, broccoli, squash and sweetcorn before the age of 75 meant lower rates of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) – the phrase used for the deteriation that occurs with ageing.

The study looked at 1,700 women between 50 and 79. It found that those under 75 were less likely to develop AMD if over the previous 15 years they consistently ate lots of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin – found in leafy green vegetables, sweetcorn, squash, broccoli and peas.

Although the scientists said more research is needed they believe the substance in these vegetables act by protecting against blue light, which can damage the area around retina It might also help prevent the condition by making the eye healthier and more immune to stresses by strengthening eye membranes and mopping up harmful molecules.

There is currently no cure for AMD and but its progress can be slowed by a healthier lifestyle.