If you have macular degeneration, you know that your doctor doesn't have much to offer. Drugs and a no smoking order are about all you'll get. Even natural medicine struggles to find answers. Dr. Margaret Edwards recently wrote me and asked: "I am a naturopathic doctor and have several clients with dry macular degeneration. Is there anything that you have found to be effective for this?"
That's a tough question. Dry AMD is the most common type of macular degeneration, accounting for about 90% of the cases of macular degeneration. The damage the dry form causes is not as severe as the "wet" type. And it doesn't occur as rapidly. But it can cause complete vision loss over time.
Fortunately, there are some things that might help. Back in February, I told you about a special herb called saffron. A study found this little-known herb can stop the progression of macular degeneration in as little as two weeks. You can read about it here.
But I wouldn't stop there. I recently heard an interesting anecdote. I'm not sure if this is true, and I have no way to verify it. But it makes for a great story - and who knows, it might just work. Apparently, a man from South Africa had severe macular degeneration. He couldn't see well enough to drive or enjoy his favorite hobby - woodworking. A nurse at his hospital told him to try eating spinach - two to three tablespoons of cooked spinach three times a day.
The man talked to his doctor and told him that instead of getting his quarterly eye injection, he was going to try eating steamed spinach. The doctor knew the medication wasn't helping, so he agreed and offered to supervise the experiment.
The story I heard didn't say how long it took, but after a time, the man was able to see well enough to begin woodworking again. And before long, he was driving again. Like I said, I don't know if the story is true or not. But eating a little cooked spinach a few times a day can only help. What's more, there's good reason to believe it might have some positive effect.
Spinach is loaded with lutein, a powerful nutrient that provides enormous benefits for the eye. But this lutein is locked away in the cell structure of raw spinach. Cooking the spinach releases the lutein making it more available for absorption when you eat it. Adding a little fat, such as organic butter, makes it even easier to digest (plus it tastes great).
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If you can't eat this much spinach - or just don't want to - you can take a supplemental form of lutein. I recommend taking it along with other eye-enhancing nutrients, like those found in Advanced Vision Formula. I know of some people who have seen their vision loss stop after taking this formula alone. So go ahead and throw the nutritional book at macular degeneration. You never know what's going to work for any particular case.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.