July 27, 2018

Turmeric May Protect Your Eyesight

We are all familiar with the golden yellow spice called turmeric (haldi), which is  used in everyday cooking by almost all families in India. It's for sure a  miracle healer from the kitchen. Turmeric is used in a wide variety of therapeutic preparations for both prevention and treatment of many ailments.

 The presence of an active substance called curcumin in turmeric imparts it with several medicinal properties. For instance, there is this Turmeric Milk / Turmeric Latte or the quintessential Haldi Doodh that is used as a remedy for sore throat, colds and coughs and is known to most people all over India; it's a highly potent beverage and its efficacy is unmatchable to OTC medicines for the same ailments.   Do check for more medicinal uses and home remedies with turmeric in this post.

Turmeric, with its antiseptic and antibacterial properties is widely used in skin care, to treat acne, hyperpigmentation etc. Read all about it in Turmeric as a beauty aid.

Turmeric Extract May Protect Your Eyesight

 

New research says that turmeric could offer hope for millions of people battling the common eye condition glaucoma. Glaucoma is a complex disease in which damage to the optic nerve leads to progressive, irreversible vision loss. It  is the second leading cause of blindness.and mainly involves the loss of retinal ganglion cells, located near the surface of the retina. Stopping the loss of these cells early on has not yet been achieved, so it is a key focus of glaucoma research. The condition strikes 60 million people across the world, estimates suggest, and is most prevalent among the elderly. Most people with glaucoma have no early symptoms or pain. That's why it's necessary to see your ophthalmologist regularly so he / she can diagnose and treat glaucoma before long-term visual loss happens.[Source]

Curcumin Eye Drops For Glaucoma

 

Turmeric May Protect Your Eyesight

 


The new study has found that a derivative of turmeric used in curry - curcumin - can be used  in eye drops to halt vision loss effectively. The chief ingredient in turmeric administered as eye drops actually helps in early stages of glaucoma. Now isn't that great news!

Excerpts:
Evidence already exists to show curcumin can protect retinal ganglion cells from dying off, when taken as a tablet.

But the compound has poor solubility, meaning it does not dissolve easily and can take a long time to enter the bloodstream.

The new British study delved in to other ways of delivering curcumin, in hope of finding a more reliable method.
They claim their findings, based on human cells and rats, pave the way for a more reliable method to deliver curcumin to patients.

Eye drops are the main treatment for glaucoma, according to the NHS. They all work by reducing the build-up of pressure in patients' eyes.

Delivering curcumin as eye drops increases the compound's solubility factor by almost 400,000 times.
And it localises the curcumin in the eyes instead of throughout the body, meaning it can get to work almost immediately.

Professor Francesca Cordeiro, who led the study, described curcumin as an 'exciting' compound.

The study was first conducted on retinal ganglion cells in the lab, before moving onto testing the eye drops in rats.

Rodents given the eye drops twice daily for three weeks had much lower levels of retinal ganglion cell loss than their counterparts.

No side effects, including irritation or inflammation, were noted by the team of researchers.

Having found an effective way to deliver curcumin, the researchers are hopeful that it could also be used to diagnose Alzheimer's disease, as curcumin is known to bind to the amyloid beta protein deposits implicated in Alzheimer's, and can be detected in the retina with fluorescence to highlight the malignant proteins.


So besides its role in preventing Alzheimer's disease and certain tumours, turmeric has also proved to be beneficial for eye health. It's indeed a wonder spice with its excellent healing capabilities. No wonder, our ancients had advised us to use it in curries and other gravies on a regular basis.


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