Lutein and zeaxanthin may protect the eyes from macular degeneration, which causes blindness in the center of one's vision.

Researchers studied more than 4,500 people aged 60 to 80 who had enrolled in the Age-Related Eye Disease Study. After six years, those who consumed the most lutein and zeaxanthin from their food had a 35 percent lower risk of macular degeneration than those who consumed the least.

The researchers found no links with vitamins C or E or beta-carotene.

What to do: Eat more spinach, kale, turnip greens, collard greens, romaine lettuce, broccoli, zucchini, corn, peas, and Brussels sprouts. Eggs are also a good source of lutein, but stick to no more than four yolks a week to keep a lid on your blood cholesterol.

Arch. Ophthalmol. 125: 1225, 2007.

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