NEW YORK, April 14, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Digital device screens have quickly become a survival crutch for families during the COVID-19 crisis. With professionals and students staying home to work remotely and social distancing causing a surge in virtual connections, the use of digital devices have nearly doubled overnight according to Nielsen Global Media. OmniActive Health Technologies notes that this dramatic surge in screen time calls for increased vision protection, especially for children whose eyes are still developing and may be exposed to higher levels of harmful blue light. Scientific data showing OmniActives’ clinically studied formulation of lutein and zeaxanthin isomers, called Lutemax 2020, can help the eyes’ innate ability to filter blue light.
“Our eyes are naturally protected from blue light by pigments called lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin, which are found in the central retina and act as internal filters to absorb harmful blue light,” said Dr. Rudrani Banik, a New York City based, board-certified ophthalmologist and neuro-ophthalmologist specializing in integrative approaches to vision health. “Supplementation of these nutrients, lutein, zeaxanthin and meso-zeaxanthin, can provide a frontline defense for our eyes, which is especially important for children’s developing eyes that may absorb more blue light than an adult’s eyes.”
Lutein and zeaxanthin are carotenoids, found in leafy greens, as well as yellow and orange fruits and vegetables. They are potent antioxidants that in nature prevent damage to plants by absorbing excessive sunlight, especially high-energy rays like blue light. When these fruits and vegetables, such as spinach, kale, romaine lettuce, corn, yellow and orange bell peppers, are consumed, the lutein and zeaxanthin carotenoids are directed into the eye’s retina and play an essential role in protecting against blue light by absorbing it. Unfortunately, according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only 10% of American adults eat the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables, while only 9% of America’s youth eats the recommended amount of fruits and 2% eat the recommended amounts of vegetables each day.
“Adults should get about 6-20 mg of lutein and 2-4 mg of zeaxanthin daily from the diet, however most only get 1-2 mg of lutein and less than 1 mg of zeaxanthin. This is where supplementation can really help,” said Banik, whose new book, “The Macular Degeneration Prevention Protocol” addresses an integrative approach to eye health. “Before COVID-19 we were already experiencing an increased shift to more screen time among both children and adults. Now because of COVID-19 I think we will see a spike in screen time activity that will likely be a new normal, making the need to protect our eye health even more critical.”
Short-term effects of blue light from digital devices are common and can cause eyestrain and eye fatigue, dry eyes, blurry vision, neck and shoulder pain, and even increased frequency of headaches. Blue light may also affect sleep quality. Additionally, the impact of blue light on children can have similar effects and can cause hyperactivity and decreased attention spans.
A study conducted at the University of Georgia found that supplementing with lutein and zeaxanthin isomers (as Lutemax 2020) reduced eye fatigue, eyestrain and headache frequency resulting from prolonged digital device use. Another double-blind, placebo controlled trial with Lutemax 2020 showed improvements in measures of vision including the ability to recover from bright lights (photostress recovery), the ability to judge distance and distinguish different objects from each other (contract sensitivity) and the ability to adjust to bright light conditions (glare performance).
“Improving your vision performance at any age is important, especially in our device dependent society,” said Banik. “It’s not just about safeguarding your eyes from blue light, it’s about making sure your eyes are performing optimally despite increased screen time. We are shifting to a digital dependent world that demands a lot more from our eyes so we cannot rely on diet alone, which was already subpar, we will have to get these nutrients from supplementing and Lutemax 2020 is an easy solution.”
Lutemax 2020 is a natural extract containing all three macular pigments that are essential for eye health including, lutein and the zeaxanthin isomers (RR-zeaxanthin and RS-zeaxanthin) in a 5-to-1 ratio as found in the diet. Multiple clinical studies support the role of Lutemax 2020 to increase the protective layer of carotenoids in the retina, improve visual performance, protect the eyes during prolonged exposure to digital device use, improve sleep quality and support cognitive performance.