Monday, 15 April 2019

Herbal Bilberry the Best for the Prevention and Treatment of Eye Disease

By Kyle J. Norton

Eye disease is a general term of conditions associated with the damage of the optic nerve and impaired vision, including disease of the cornea and macular degeneration.

People with eye disease in the early stage may not have any symptoms. However, depending on the severity and location that affects the vision, people with eye disease at the advanced stage may experience symptoms of acute eye pain, hazy, blurred, or double vision, seeing flashes of light or sudden bright floating spots.

If you have some of the aforementioned symptoms, you may have eye disease. Please make sure that you check with your doctor to rule out the possibility.

Most common eye problems are minor and will go away on their own such as red-eye and eye strain. However, some eye problems may require medical attention such as vision change.

According to the statistics, the financial burden of vision loss and eye diseases and vision disorders in the U.S. has taken a toll on health care costs. Approximately, over $130 billion a year are spent to treat eye disease.

Bilberry is a species of low-growing shrubs in the genus Vaccinium, belonging to the family Ericaceae, native to Northern Europe.

The plant has been used as herbs in traditional medicine for the treatment of acute and chronic diarrhea, gastritis, gastric ulcer, and duodenal ulcer, enterocolitis, ulcerative colitis, anemia, cystitis, kidney disease, and psoriasis, diabetes, etc.

In the urgency to find a natural source of the compound for the treatment of eye disease, particularly in the older population, researchers investigated the effects of bilberry anthocyanosides (Vaccinium myrtillus L.).

Bilberry anthocyanosides were found to promote rhodopsin, a biological pigment found in the rods of the retina synthesis and regeneration.

Moreover, the compounds increased retinal sensitivity to changes in light intensity and improved the visual acuity and dark adaptation and blood supply of the retina.

The findings support the regular use of bilberry anthocyanosides as a dietary source against the age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, primary open-angle glaucoma, and other diseases.

Additionally, in order to reveal more information about bilberry bioactive compound property, researchers evaluated the effect of Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) and anthocyanins on visual function in patients with normal tension glaucoma (NTG) based on the vascular theory of mechanisms of glaucomatous optic nerve damage. 

332 subjects data (209 men and 123 women) treated with anthocyanins (n=132), GBE (n=103), or no medication (control, n=97) were reviewed.

According to the tested assays, the mean anthocyanin treatment duration was 24.32±10.43 (range, 6-53) months, and the mean GBE treatment duration was 23.81±10.36 months (range, 6-59) months.

After anthocyanin treatment, the mean best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) for all eyes improved from 0.16 logMAR units, and Humphrey Visual Field (HVF) mean deviation improved from -6.44.

Dr. Shim SH, the lead scientist said, "These results suggest that anthocyanins and GBE may be helpful in improving visual function in some individuals with NTG".

Taken altogether, bilberry processed abundantly bioactive compound anthocyanin may be considered a functional remedy for the prevention and treatment of eye diseases, pending to the validation of larger sample size and multicenter human study.

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Author Biography
Kyle J. Norton (Scholar, Master of Nutrition, All right reserved)

Health article writer and researcher; Over 10.000 articles and research papers have been written and published online, including worldwide health, ezine articles, article base, health blogs, self-growth, best before it's news, the karate GB daily, etc.,.
Named TOP 50 MEDICAL ESSAYS FOR ARTISTS & AUTHORS TO READ by Named 50 of the best health Tweeters Canada - Huffington Post
Nominated for shorty award over last 4 years
Some articles have been used as references in medical research, such as international journal Pharma and Bioscience, ISSN 0975-6299.

(1) [Current data on the role of anthocyanosides and flavonoids in the treatment of eye diseases].[Article in Russian; Abstract available in Russian from the publisher] by Vorob'eva IV1, Vorob'eva IV. (PubMed)
(2) Ginkgo biloba extract and bilberry anthocyanins improve visual function in patients with normal tension glaucoma by Shim SH1, Kim JM, Choi CY, Kim CY, Park KH. (PubMed)

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