Fact or Fiction: Eye Health and Beyond

Sometimes, it feels like only a few months ago that I was hired as a writer in USANA’s creative department, but it’s actually been more than two years that I’ve sat at my desk, typing away at this keyboard. It’s amazing how much product knowledge I’ve absorbed over the years, realizing that each one of them serves a specific role in maintaining and improving my health. Maybe that’s why it still surprises me to learn something new about the quality ingredients found in our products.

It was after speaking with Toni McKinnon, USANA’s director of science information, that I discovered for many of our products, there’s definitely more than meets the eye.

114158448I was asking Toni for some recommendations on products to include in my personalized MyHealthPak™, and she suggested an eye-health supplement. I explained that I have perfect vision, so including one of these nutritionals would be wasting one of the spots in MyHealthPak. This is when I learned not to assume you know everything about a certain product, especially when speaking with one of our in-house experts.

Here’s a breakdown of Toni’s very helpful — and convincing — argument for me not to assume a product has only one benefit.

Serving Its Purpose

So here’s the thing: obviously, with an eye-health supplement, the main purpose it serves is to benefit the human eye, but that doesn’t mean people like me with perfect vision should pass it up. You see, it’s also about preserving and maintaining the health of our eyes, because, over time, they’re exposed to harmful environmental factors such as air pollution, dryness, and oxidative damage from sunlight.

This damage can often lead to what’s called Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD). If you’re wondering what the heck that means, just know this: there’s a part of our eye in the center of the retina that is called the macula, and it’s important to protect the sensitive receptors found there, because they’re responsible for central vision and high visual acuity. If you don’t protect the macula, you’re at a much higher risk for AMD, which can result in loss of or blurred vision.

Of all the antioxidant carotenoids found in human serum, only lutein and zeaxanthin are present in the macula, making them crucial to preserving eye health. So a quality eye-health supplement should contain both of these critical carotenoids.

More than Meets the Eye

This lutein stuff is pretty awesome, because it provides additional benefits to other functions of the body and to other organs besides the eye.

Just as the eyes are exposed to outside damage, our skin is susceptible to the harmful effects of sunlight and environmental pollutants. Good thing that a study cited on the Lutein Information Bureau’s website suggests that 10 mg of lutein daily would increase skin hydration, elasticity, and skin lipid component.

As the largest organ of the body, skin acts as a barrier that protects internal organs and regulates body temperature. It also plays an important role in immunological response. The takeaway? Your skin is super important.

The same lutein website discusses a study that showed the benefits lutein may have on cardiovascular health. The findings suggested that higher levels of lutein in blood serum may be linked with less thickening of arterial walls, helping with preventative measures against diseases such as atherosclerosis.

Last, but not least, an advanced eye-health supplement that contains a good dose of vitamin C serves yet another purpose. An essential, water-soluble nutrient that our body cannot produce on its own, vitamin C supports white blood cell production and is maintained in cells to protect against oxidative stress. While this can provide antioxidant protection that helps the retina, vitamin C also helps to support immune defenses in those times when you need to stay healthy.

The Verdict

By now, it’s pretty obvious that we can call this one fiction — meaning I was totally wrong in assuming that certain products serve only one purpose.

Not only did Toni’s argument convince me to add an eye-health supplement to MyHealthPak, but I was delighted to discover that USANA offers some of their supplements in a super-strength version. These provide the same ingredients as the original product in half the dosage amount and are exclusive to MyHealthPak users.

Now that we’ve cracked this case, start sharing this information with your friends and family so that they know the health benefits behind each ingredient found in their daily nutritional regimen.

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1 reply
  1. Camille Fletcher
    Camille Fletcher says:

    Great post Nick! Another good reason to take Visionex, especially right now, is that it can help your eyes recover from glare. Just think of all those headlights shining on wet roads during the winter–it can be pretty tough to see while driving with all the twinkles in your eyes. Visionex can help with that, so driving at night will be less “glarey.”

    Reply

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