GLAUCOMA & MACULAR DEGENERATION
Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness in the United States.
An eye disorder that affects the optic nerve, glaucoma is the result of an increase of pressure within the eye. Often, it impairs vision. As pressure within the eye builds, the field of vision becomes more clouded. If enough pressure builds, blindness can result.
While the medical community is able to find risk factors associated with the cause of glaucoma, including genetic risk factors, there is no one clear cause.
However, much research has been done specifically on glaucoma and on oxidative stress in the body. The research tells us that oxidative stress does in fact have a strong positive link to the development of glaucoma.
We hear the word “oxidation” a lot these days. But what does it really mean?
Oxidative stress is the deterioration of cells and cell function that results from excessive oxidation. Oxidation is a natural chemical reaction that takes place everywhere, all the time.
In the body, the oxidation of anything generates free radicals. Think of free radicals as high-energy troublemakers that can wreak havoc on otherwise peaceful, happy cells.
We naturally produce some free radicals.
We can also consume food that is highly oxidized, meaning that is full of free radicals.
Important: Free radicals play a role in every disease that we know of.
When our bodies are not equipped with enough antioxidants, free radicals build up. The buildup of free radicals generates free radical damage, or oxidative stress. If this happens often enough, over time it can lead to premature aging and degenerative diseases. Glaucoma is one disease of many that results from excessive free radical damage.
Some of the research done on glaucoma has shown that the fluid within the eye of glaucoma patients is lacking important antioxidants.
Antioxidants act as a buffer system and protect cells from oxidative stress. In the fluid of the eye of glaucoma patients, researchers have found that one specific antioxidant is generally depleted. This antioxidant is glutathione.
Thanks to Dr. Oz and his wildly popular television show, now more people than ever know about the value and benefits of glutathione!
Glutathione is the master antioxidant in our body. Not only is it present in every single cell, but it also plays several important roles within the body. Such as:
Protection against oxidative stress.
Detoxification of heavy metals, pesticides, and other foreign chemicals that find their way into the body.
Protection and development of immune cells.
Glutathione levels in the body are often used as a biomarker, or an indicator of how stressed a certain tissue may be. Low levels of glutathione are linked to all of the diseases associated with aging, including: