Thursday, July 26, 2007

Zeaxanthin linked to better mental performance in the elderly

Zeaxanthin linked to better mental performance in the elderly 7/26/07 "Increased intake of the carotenoids lycopene and zeaxanthin may improve the mental performance of the elderly...levels of the carotenoids were linked to the lowest levels of cognitive function amongst 589 healthy older people..."

What are good sources of zeaxanthin? Lots of it is in corn, also green leafy veggies like spinach and kale, it is also found in eggs which also contain lutein. The American Macular Degeneration Foundation has a handy chart of what foods contain the most zeaxanthin. The following is zeaxanthin per 100gms:

"Corn, drainedsweet, yellow, canned, whole kernel-528 mcg"
"Spinach, raw-331 mcg"
"Collards, drainedcooked, boiled, without salt-266 mcg"
"Spinach, drainedcooked, boiled, without salt-179 mcg"
"Orange juice, frozen concentrateunsweetened, diluted -80 mcg"
"Lettuce, rawcos or romaine -187 mcg"

As for bioavailability it looks like eggs allows the zeaxanthin into our bloodstream efficiently. Bioavailibility appears quite important in that certain foods do not deliver it into our bodies as well as others. The one egg a day study on macular degeneration showed that you could safely raise levels of lutein and zeaxanthin in the body without affecting LDL cholesterol. If eggs seem to be a great way to reduce the risk of macular degeneration, can they also fight cognitive decline? More on macular degeneration and eggs here.

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