Does an orange a day keep the eye doctor away? New research has shown that people who eat oranges regularly are less likely to develop an age-related eye disease later on in life.
The July 2018 study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, involved interviewing more than 2,000 Australian adults over 50 years old and followed them over the course of a 15-year period. The research showed that folks who ate at least one serving of oranges per day had more than a 60 percent reduced risk of developing macular degeneration by the time the study was over.
Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss, affecting more than 10 million Americans, according to the American Macular Degeneration Foundation. Caused by deterioration of an inside back layer of the eye, this eye disease is more likely to happen to people over 50. Age is the strongest known risk factor, and unfortunately, there is no cure. That said, it's encouraging to know that there may be simple — and tasty — ways to reduce that risk.
"Even eating an orange once a week seems to offer significant benefits," said lead researcher Bamini Gopinath, PhD, in a press release. "The data shows that flavonoids found in oranges appear to help protect against the disease."
Flavonoids are powerful antioxidants that are found in a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, according to Dr. Gopinath. But in the study, oranges came out on top, with the strongest link to a lower risk of macular degeneration.
"We examined common foods that contain flavonoids such as tea, apples, red wine, and oranges," Gopinath said. "Significantly, the data did not show a relationship between other food sources protecting the eyes against the disease."
Don't mind us as we reach for the nearest citrus we can find!
Next, learn about more tasty superfoods that can help you live longer in the video below: