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With the growth of age, the aging of the body and the excessive use of electronic products in work and life, more and more people suffer from age-related macular degeneration (AMD), retinitis pigmentosa, myopia and other ophthalmic diseases. Statistics show that the number of myopia patients in China is as high as 600 million, accounting for almost 50% of the total population in China.
Teenagers' myopia rate is already the highest in the world, among which the myopia rate of both junior high school students and college students in China has exceeded 70%. Compared with other countries, the myopia rate of American teenagers is about 25%, Australia is only 1.3%, and Germany's myopia rate has been controlled below 15%. Medical evidence shows that myopia over 600 degrees, if not treated in time, may be passed on to the next generation.
In the face of eye diseases, we should have the consciousness of prevention and treatment in advance and learn to protect our eyes. Studies have found that zeaxanthin and lutein can effectively prevent or relieve such diseases. Lutein exists together with zeaxanthin in nature and is the main component of plant pigments such as corn, vegetables, fruits and flowers. Lutein is contained in chloroplasts of leaves and can transfer absorbed light energy to chlorophyll a, which is presumed to have protective effects on photooxidation and photodestruction.
1. Lutein and zeaxanthin are the main pigment components of retina
Zeaxanthin and lutein exist in various tissues of the body, with eye tissues being the most prominent. Zeaxanthin mainly exists in the fovea region of the retina, while lutein mainly exists in the periretinal region. Lutein cannot be produced by human body, and must be supplemented by intake. Without this element, eyes will become blind.
2, filtering blue light, delaying eye aging and preventing pathological changes
Macular pigment is composed of zeaxanthin and lutein. The molecular structure of zeaxanthin and lutein contains alternating single bonds and double bonds. The existence of conjugated double bonds enables it to have peroxide groups, which can effectively quench oxygen free radical transmission, thus exerting antioxidant effect, reducing blue light damage, and thus protecting eye tissues from stimulation and damage.
The decrease of macular pigment density (MPOD) will lead to the pathological changes of the irreversible structure of retina and lower function, thus causing the occurrence and development of retinal diseases.
3. Prevent eye diseases and improve eyesight
Lutein and zeaxanthin can prevent senile macular degeneration, retinal pigment degeneration and other diseases. In addition, lutein can also protect eyesight, delay the deepening of myopia and relieve asthenopia.
Effect on brain health
For many years, one of the reasons lutein has been hot in scientific research is that its health effects have been continuously confirmed by clinical research institutes, and brain health is one of them. In recent years, research on lutein in the brain has been very hot. For example, the relationship between MPOD and time processing speed can be used as a marker of central nervous system health. The proximity of retinal tissue, optic nerve and brain tissue partly determines lutein can protect eyes and improve brain health.
A 2017 study by the University of Georgia found that lutein and zeaxanthin help promote brain health in the elderly. Researchers pointed out that subjects with high lutein and zeaxanthin content need only a small amount of brain activity when recalling the word combinations learned in the early stage, which means that the nervous system of these subjects is more effective. Another study also shows that Lutemax 2020 lutein product of Omega Company can significantly improve brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein involved in neural plasticity, which can grow and differentiate neuronal cells, and also improve learning, memory and cognitive functions. Visual and Neurological Sensitivity II(LAMA II) studies also found that the product can reduce cortisol levels, which is a stress-related factor.
Improvement of skin
Lutein in macula can protect eyes from photooxidation, and lutein also deposited on skin has similar effect on skin health. In 2016, a study carried out by OmniActive showed that supplement of 10 mg Lutemax 2020 product every day can obviously improve skin health for 12 consecutive weeks, such as increasing skin color, brightness, elasticity, and minimum erythema dose (MED). Higher MED content means stronger protection effect on the sun. Different from other carotenoids, this product will not cause carotene yellow skin disease, and dietary supplements are usually easy to cause skin yellowing.
Lutein is a rising star in the field of skin health. Its unique feature is that it can solve the skin color and sun protection problems faced by people, which also conforms to the development trend of market beauty from the inside out.
According to the market survey by Innova Market Insights, the compound annual growth rate of lutein and zeaxanthin new products (including supplements) reached 23% from 2012 to 2016, with lutein 25% and zeaxanthin 17.2%. At the same time, Innova also predicts that the global lutein price will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 6.3% from 2017 to 2020, and the market size is expected to reach 350 million US dollars. The main driving factor of lutein market is consumers' attention to age-related diseases such as macular degeneration. However, more new research shows lutein has applications in other health fields, such as brain health, exercise nutrition, skin health and sleep management, etc. These new findings will attract more and more consumers of different groups to pay attention to the raw material.
From January to September 2018, the total amount of lutein exported by China was 50 million US dollars, with a total amount of 2800 tons. Exports from the top five markets accounted for 82% of total exports, with Mexico's exports reaching 26.7 million US dollars. Spain, with an export value of US $ 7.42 million; Peru, with an export value of 3.75 million US dollars; Singapore, with an export value of US $ 2.04 million; Italy exports 1.5 million US dollars.
Lutein export is mainly marigold extract.
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