Expert Discussion with Jerry Hickey, Ph.: Macula Hx
Written By Jerry Hickey, Ph.
Jerry Hickey is a pharmacist and radio personality and fills the esteemed role of Scientific Director and President of Invite Health. He has spent his professional life analyzing nutritional information and medical studies with the aim of creating the highest quality and most natural nutraceuticals for user’s maximum health benefits. Here, Jerry speaks about the benefits of Macula Hx®…
I was talking about a letter to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, and it said that people who played baseball will get value for the macular pigment, lutein and zeaxanthin. So, what’s that all about? I’ll explain, because there’s actual truth in that. In fact, recently, they took those two supplements. This is from a study in Italy. It was the Italian army, and the soldiers are at the top of their game with physical fitness and vision. When they use night vision goggles, if they're on lutein and zeaxanthin, they could perform better and see better than before and compared to other soldiers. It helped promote their vision.†
So, lutein and zeaxanthin, we call them macular pigments. Your eye only accepts certain antioxidants, and when you’re young, you’re loaded with those. It protects your eyes. The very function of vision throws off a lot of free radicals and this damages the sensitive little organs in the back of the eye. They're called organelles. They're tiny little sensitive organs and tissues. So, when you’re young, you’re loaded with these antioxidants that defend the eye. But as you get older, there’s a natural decrease in the level of these antioxidants in the eye. Research is showing, if you counterbalance that and you take a supplement or you really focus on the foods that are rich in these things, you can help protect and preserve and maybe even improve on your vision. So, we’re going to some of these studies because this is pretty critical.†
There are pigments in plants known as carotenoids and they're orange-y red. One is beta-keratin, one is lutein and one is zeaxanthin. Lutein and zeaxanthin help create your internal sunglasses. It’s called your macular tissue. Your macular tissue protects the back of the eye from solar radiation, from cigarette smoke. It’s kind of like a catcher’s mitt, and it’s your internal sunglasses really. It protects the sensitive little organs in the back of the eye, the rods, the cones, the fovea, the retina from solar radiation, from cigarette smoke and inflammation, and also from unstable blue light. The spectrum of light that damages the eyes the most is blue light because it is highly unstable and creates a lot of free radicals in the eye. So when you’re young, you have a lot of these antioxidants available. As you get older, there are less and less of them.†
So, we have this vision formula and it’s loaded with these macular pigments that help support the eye’s macular tissues. Let me tell you, anybody with an eye issue, you should look at this formula.†
We’ve actually added a couple of nutrients to a typical eye formula. We’ve added a couple of berries. Now, berries are very powerful and protective antioxidants, but not all berries are absorbed by humans. So, they might look good in the lab test inside a Petri dish or inside a test tube that they were working as an antioxidant, but they're not absorbed by humans. So, we actually have in this formula two berries that are terrific antioxidants in humans and have an affinity for going to the eye. One of these is the cassis berry and one of them is bilberry. It’s a northern European cousin to the blueberry.†
It’s also called whortleberry and these are both in our Macula vision formula. It is called Macula Hx® Advanced.
We get our cassis berry from New Zealand. It grows in this nice pristine evergreen forest. It’s beautiful. When we get the cassis berry from New Zealand, they’ve tested it, and there are four different powerful dark berry antioxidants that nourish and protect the eye and improve visual health, but three of them actually restore rhodopsin levels as well. When you go into a dark room at night, your eyes dilate and the core of your eye, that dark part gets bigger so you can see at night. That’s called rhodopsin, and you need it for night vision. You need it for driving at night or in low light to protect your eyes from glare and tiredness, but you use it up in the daytime, too. For instance, when you’re on the computer, you’re using up your rhodopsin, so they're showing that particular berry can help restore rhodopsin, which is great for daytime vision, but also very, very crucial, if you have lousy night vision.†
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