According to a study published in Journal Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology, eating plenty of salmon, sardines and mackerel may help protect older people against loss of sight. A chemical found in fish oil boosts the daily survival of cells critical to eyesight protecting against age-related vision loss or macular degeneration. The discovery could lead to new treatments for a host of degenerative diseases of the retina- based on harnessing its power.
Results reveal the omega-3 fatty acid DHA, which is abundant in oily fish, preconditions different types of retinal cells to be able to withstand stress, such as their blood supply being cut off. In laboratory tests, human eye cells exposed to constant light withstand damage if they are supplemented with such oils.
Researchers claim that their findings support the proposed concept that DHA and docosanoids, molecules made in the brain at the onset of injury or disease, are responsible for activating sustained cellular mechanisms that elicit long term preconditioning protection.
Although fish oil also contains omega-6 AA that is inflammatory and could therefore cause further damage, omega-3 DHA is thought to alter the former oil’s action.
In laboratory experiments the researchers exposed human retinal cells, as well as those of living rats, to constant light. Prior omega-3 DHA supplementation.