Chris A Knobbe from the University of Texas has studied factors that are thought to be important in the causation of Age Related Macular Degeneration. (AMD).
AMD is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in developing nations. In 2020 some 196 million people were affected worldwide. And Dr Knobbe thinks this is almost always down to dietary factors, in particular the consumption of processed food such as sugar, vegetable oils, refined white flour and trans fats.
Historically, between 1851 and 1930, AMD was a rarity. It rose modestly in the 1930s but became an epidemic in the UK and USA by 1975.
By 2009 63% of the American diet consisted of processed sugars, starch and oils.
By looking at the food intake and AMD in 25 nations, it was seen that as the traditional diets were replaced with processed foods, the incidence of new onset AMD correspondingly rose.
If sugar intake is moderate but polyunsaturated fat ingestion is rare, AMD does not rise.
It would therefore appear that processed and nutrient deficient foods are toxic to the retina.
AMD could probably be entirely preventable through reverting back to ancestral dietary patterns, should that be feasible, or eliminating processed foods that have become ubiquitous. Avoidance of these foods is likely to be extremely important for people who have been diagnosed with early or moderate AMD.
Dr. Morrison comments: She was recently at a Hospice ladies lunch group and was sitting at a table with six other women who were about 10-20 years older than herself. Five of them were currently getting eye injections for AMD. Diets that are considered the healthiest by Dr Google are the Mediterranean, Japanese, South Korean and French. None included processed foods."