Let's get to know Lutein together!

7 minutes read

What is Lutein?

Lutein is a fat-soluble carotenoid with strong antioxidant properties. It naturally coexists with zeaxanthin in the human retina's central photoreceptor region called the macula. Since the human body cannot synthesize carotenoids on its own, it must be obtained through natural foods or supplements. Marigold (Calendula) has been identified as one of the richest sources of these compounds, and many health products extract lutein and zeaxanthin from marigold.

What are the Benefits of Lutein?

The functions of lutein include inhibiting free radicals, filtering blue light to reduce damage to light-sensitive cells in the eyes, and thereby protecting the retina. Moreover, research indicates that lutein can suppress inflammation-related cell signaling pathways, reduce the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and regulate the immune system and inflammatory responses. This makes it beneficial in preventing conditions such as cataracts and macular degeneration.

Let's summarize its benefits into three points:

  1. Antioxidant properties, inhibiting free radicals, and reducing inflammation.
  2. Prevention of macular degeneration and retinal pigment changes
  3. Lowering the incidence of cataracts.

The primary function of lutein is to protect eye tissues and slow down degeneration. Whether it can prevent eye diseases depends on factors such as age, chronic diseases, degree of myopia, lifestyle, and sunlight exposure.

Regarding claims of improving floaters and dry eyes through lutein, there is currently no substantial research confirming significant effects on these conditions.

What to Consider when Taking Lutein?

As lutein is a fat-soluble nutrient, an excess of dietary fiber can hinder its absorption, leading to a decrease in blood carotenoid concentration. Orlistat, a weight-loss drug that inhibits lipase activity, has been shown to reduce lutein absorption. Individuals taking both Orlistat and lutein should be cautious.

Lutein is generally safe, with no evidence of long-term toxicity or teratogenicity. However, at a daily intake of 15 mg for 20 weeks, skin yellowing has been observed. The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives recommends a daily intake limit of 2 mg per kilogram, while the FDA suggests 6 mg daily to prevent macular degeneration.

Before taking lutein supplements, consider whether dietary intake is insufficient and consult a doctor to determine the appropriate dosage. Excessive intake does not provide better preventive effects and may lead to skin discoloration.

Who Should Consider Lutein Supplementation?

  • Individuals with an imbalanced diet, especially those who frequently eat out.
  • Students and office workers who spend extended periods on screens.
  • Middle-aged and elderly individuals experiencing visual decline.

If unsure about suitability, consult a physician to determine the appropriate dosage.

Foods Rich in Lutein

In addition to supplements, lutein can be obtained through foods such as:

  • Dark green vegetables: Lettuce, spinach, sweet potato leaves, kale, broccoli, and cauliflower.
  • Other vegetables: Chili peppers, broccoli, peas, cucumbers, zucchini, pumpkin, carrots, and corn.
  • Fruits: Kiwi, grapes, oranges, grapefruit, tomatoes, papaya, cantaloupe, and blueberries.
  • Eggs, especially egg yolks.

Steaming rather than frying these foods is recommended, as high-temperature frying may degrade lutein, reducing its effectiveness.

Wanna learn more?

Lutein: Eye Vitamin

Want to learn more?


Nutrition for Men

The article outlines various nutritional needs and considerations for men, such as the importance of a diet rich in antioxidants and phytonutrients to address cardiovascular issues, and the benefits of consuming nutrients like lycopene, zinc, and vitamin D to prevent prostate problems.

Nutrition for Women

The article discusses the importance of a balanced diet and supplementation for women's health, including the need for calcium, magnesium, iron, folic acid, vitamins A, C, D, and omega-3 fatty acids, and how imbalances in these nutrients can affect conditions such as PMS.

Feminine Hygiene Tips

Maintaining proper feminine hygiene is important for vaginal health and involves practices such as keeping the area clean and dry, avoiding douching, eating a healthy diet, using fresh towels, practicing safe sex, and wiping from front to back.