All athletes are finding a way to improve their sports performance. Many athletes go through agility training and sports camp.
As athletes, trainers, coaches know the importance of nutrition in sports performance, they tend to overlook the importance of the nutrition of eyes in sports performance. Having excellent visual skills is important in most sports.
Carotenoids are suggested by recent research to be the most beneficial nutritional supplement in improving sports performance but not all are familiar with this.
Carotenoids are known to be the natural pigment that gives the green, yellow, orange, and red color to fruits and vegetables. Three carotenoids are known to be present in the eye. They act as antioxidants and shield cells from the produced free radicals when physical activity is done.
When there is a build-up of free radicals in our body it can greatly affect DNA, fats, and proteins which can affect the recovery of the body from a sports injury. Vitamin A, vitamin E, and bioflavonoids are antioxidant substances that are known to be important in sports nutrition.
Three Carotenoids in the Eye
The eye carotenoids are lutein, zeaxanthin, and meso-zeaxanthin. They are concentrated in the macula. The macula is known to be responsible for visual acuity and color vision which is essential in sports performance.
These three carotenoids act as the protection of the eye or “macular pigment”. Besides the importance of these carotenoids in sports performance, they reduce the risk of macular degeneration in later stages of life.
Research About Eye Carotenoids and Visual Performance
In the research conducted about the importance of eye carotenoids to sports performance, three recent findings are noted:
The research conducted at the Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland showed that daily nutritional supplement that contains carotenoids improved the visual performance of individuals who have a normal visual acuity. The participants who took multi-carotenoid supplements demonstrated improved contrast sensitivity.
The research conducted at the University of Georgia showed that young adults who take supplements containing zeaxanthin or lutein improved visual processing speed.
Supplements With Carotenoids
With recent studies and research, athletes now take carotenoid eye supplements. These are the following premium supplements that contain carotenoids in macula pigment:
MacuHealth with LMZ3 is a dietary supplement that is composed of the three eye carotenoids. The ratio of eye carotenoids is 10:10:2 which means in each capsule there is 10 mg lutein, 10 mg meso-zeaxanthin, and 2 mg zeaxanthin.
EyePromise Zeaxanthin + Lutein is known to have the highest available level of zeaxanthin than any other carotenoid supplement. The capsule contains 10 mg zeaxanthin and 10 mg lutein.