On Sunday's radio show (The Willner Window, March 12, 2012) Don and Sam spoke about the role of nutritional supplements in AMD. The discussion was based on a detailed article Don wrote on his blog, www.dongoldberg.com. It will appear in the next Willner Chemists product reference catalog as well. At the end of the discussion, Don presented a list of the supplements he takes personally. For those of you who might be interested in those products, the list is reprinted below. To read the full article, go to www.dongoldberg.com.
"On a personal note, my primary area of health vulnerability is my eyes. I have had cataract surgery. I am already suffering partial visual field loss due to glaucoma. I have a family history of glaucoma. I was extremely myopic, which increases my potential for various retinal damage. Adjusting my supplement protocol to accommodate this problem is of the highest importance to me. I do not take an “AREDS” formula. Instead, I apply the lesson learned from that research by including the following products in my daily supplement regimen:
* Antiox Phyto Complex (Willner Chemists, Code: 57091)
This is a powerful blend of antioxidants from plant extracts (Acai Berry, Mangosteen, Goji, Pomegranate, Green Tea, Grape Skin and Grape Seed). Dose: One capsule twice a day.
* Blackcurrant with Lutein (Jarrow Formulas, Code: 55410)
Each capsule contains 200 mg of black currant extract, along with 10 mg lutein and 400 mcg Zeaxanthin. Dose: One capsule twice a day.
* Omega Vision (Nordic Naturals, Code: 55601)
A blend of omega-3 fish oil (High DHA to EPA ratio) with extra lutein (10 mg per softgel) and zeaxanthin. Dose: One or two softgels, twice a day.
* Willvite Multivitamin Multimineral (Willner Chemists, Code: 30439)
A full spectrum, balanced multivitamin multimineral, with calcium and magnesium. It provides 30 mg of zinc, as an amino acid chelate and 2 mg copper, as the gluconate. It also provides 300 IU of natural vitamin E and a total of 20,000 IU of vitamin A. That 20,000 IU of vitamin A is divided as follows: 15,000 IU as natural beta-carotein and 5,000 IU as actual, preformed vitamin A. This is a bonus when it comes to various conditions, including AMD prevention. And finally, it also includes 1000 mg of vitamin C, as ascorbic acid and calcium ascorbate along with all the other B-vitamins, trace minerals, etc. Dose: 2 tablets, two times a day.
* Alpha Lipoic Sustain 300 with Biotin (Jarrow Formulas, Code 59190, 32968)
A powerful, fat soluble antioxidant. It has been shown to have special value in glaucoma and diabetes. Dose: One tablet twice a day.
* Ubiquinol 100 mg (various brands, Jarrow Formula QH-Absorb Code: 59922)
Powerful antioxidant. Look for “Kaneka” trademark symbol. Dose: One softgel, two times a day.
* Antiox Phyto Blend (Willner Chemists, Code: 57551)
This is optional. It is similar to the Antiox Phyto Complex, above, but is a liquid (dropper bottler) rather than a liquid-filled capsule. I add a dropper ful of Antiox Phyto Blend to my bottled water, my evening Margarita, as a way to get additional phyto antioxidants. It contains Acai, Mangosteen, Pomegranate and Goji. It has a mild, berry flavor and easily blends in with water, etc.
Now, this is not my total supplement regimen. I also take extra vitamin D3, GPLC (Glycine Propionyl-L-Carnitine, Probiotics, etc). But these are those products I count on to provide the specific nutrients shown to be protective (and perhaps therapeutic) for AMD prevention and other eye problems.
Getting back to the original question, no one product is going to be the answer. You need a broad spectrum multivitamin multimineral. You need extra antioxidants, both regular (vitamins such as lutein, vitamin A, vitamin C, etc) and plant derived (phyto antioxidants such as ginkgo, billberry, goji, grape skin, etc). You need fish oil omega-3's, in therapeutic quantity. You need a comprehensive supplement regimen, not a single “eye,” “vision,” or “AREDS” formula.
If you need help deciding on a supplement program for this problem, or others, you are welcome to consult with the pharmacists and nutritionists at Willner Chemists. We will evaluate your current supplement regimen, and offer suggestions for improvement or optimization. Stop by any of our stores, or call 1-800-633-1106. An in-person visit is always best, but we will do our best to help you over the telephone if you cannot come to the store.
Don Goldberg, R.Ph.