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Lycium Barbarum - for Vision (Retina) | Longevity | Intestinal Health and Slows Aging!

Lycium Barbarum (LB), also known as wolfberry, has been shown to provide powerful anti-aging effects. Significantly, long term feeding of LB in lab animals have shown increased longevity, eye (retina) support, including age-related macular degeneration (AMD), support liver health and boost of intestinal health and immunity.(1)

 

  INCREASING MEAN LIFESPAN

  • Studies involving D. melanogaster (fruit fly), shown LB increases serum and organ levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD), reduced glutathione and catalase (CAT) antioxidant activity. SOD and CAT have been shown in research models to promote longevity. (2)
  • Positively promotes anti-aging pathways (MAPK, TOR, S6K) and increases expression of longevity genes (2)

PRESERVING RETINA FUNCTION

  • Retinal diseases have underlying high levels of oxidative stress. Photoreceptors and RPE (Retinal Pigment Endothelium) have very high metabolic activity and additional stress comes from photooxidative damage (due to light). Oxidative stress in the retina leads to increased amounts of lipofuscin - which is formed from oxidative by products and can trigger retinal damage and apoptosis. 
  • LB has shown potential support for retinal diseases. While most studies have been in animal models, long term studies and human studies still need to be done. Retinal diseases which may benefit from LB include (3)
    • Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) - in early AMD LB has slowed progression and inhibited soft drusen formation.
    • Diabetic Retinopathy (DR) - In animal studies, LB restored retinal thickness, reversed hyperglycemic oxidative stress, promoted reductions in retinal vascular changes seen in diabetic retinopathy. Reversed increased VEGF vascular growth factor - which increases vascularization in DR. Also enhanced protection of blood-retinal-brain barrier (which is disrupted by diabetes), causing macular edema. 
    • Retinitis Pigmentosa - an inherited genetic disease of the retina. LB may improve visual processing by increasing antioxidant protection  of photoreceptors.
  • LB significant increases antioxidation levels, while inhibiting lipid peroxidation (fatty acids are prevalent in photoreceptor membranes).
  • LB is the richest source of natural Zeaxanthin. Contains very high bioavailable Zeaxanthin (demonstrated in animals and humans)

PROMOTES INTESTINE HEALTH / IMMUNE RESPONSE

  • Strengthens the intestinal barrier, which is critical for maintaining a healthy functioning intestine.LB Promotes increased production of short chain fatty acids (which is anti-inflammatory)
  • Promotes intestinal immunity (1)  Support general immune response through changes in gut microbiota  and increases in short chain fatty acids.(5)

PROTECTS LIVER 

  • Attenuates liver cell damage from environmental contaminants (plastics), in addition to alcohol toxicity by increasing levels of Nrf2, a master regulator of cellular antioxidants in the cell. As a result,  Nrf2 triggers significant increases in cellular antioxidant activity and inhibiting apoptosis of the liver cells. Alcohol induced damage to the liver is a result of increased oxidative stress and destruction of the cells.(1,6,7)

     

    VISION VITALITY  (Lycium Bararum)

     

      REFERENCES:

      (1) Ding Y, et al. Effects of long-term consumption of polysaccharides from the fruit of Lycium barbarum on host's health.  Food Res Int. 2021 Jan.

      (2) Tang R, et al. Lycium barbarum polysaccharides extend the mean lifespan of Drosophila melanogaster.  Food Funct. 2019 Jul.

      (3) Neelam K, et al. Fructus lycii: A Natural Dietary Supplement for Amelioration of Retinal Diseases. Nutrients. 2021 Jan.

      (4) Ding Y, et al. Modulating effects of polysaccharides from the fruits of Lycium barbarum on the immune response and gut microbiota in cyclophosphamide-treated mice.

      (5) Ding Y, et al. Modulating effects of polysaccharides from the fruits of Lycium barbarum on the immune response and gut microbiota in cyclophosphamide-treated mice. Food Funct. 2019 Jun.

      (6) Liu R, et al. Protective effect of Lycium barbarum polysaccharide on di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate-induced toxicity in rat liver. Environ Sci Pollut Res Intl. 2021. Jan.

      (7) Wang H, et al. Hepatoprotective effect of crude polysaccharide isolated from Lycium barbarum L. against alcohol-induced oxidative damage involves Nrf2 signaling. Food Sci Nutr. 2020 Oct..

      Vision Longevity - Activating Nrf2 in the Retina by Lutein Zeaxanthin and Meso zeaxanthin

      It has been well studied that the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin play an important role in preserving eye function by directly acting as antioxidants. However, new research indicates that these powerhouses go one important step further. This is through the activation the Nfr2 antioxidant defense network.

      Nrf2 is a latent protein in the cell, that when activated, becomes a powerful transcription factor that turn on the Antioxidant Response Element (ARE). ARE is the master antioxidant switch in the cell and provides overwhelming antioxidant response, including increased levels of the potent cellular protector glutathione.

      LUTEIN ZEAXANTHIN and MESO ZEAXANTHIN act as both direct antioxidants and as Nrf2 activators. Significantly, this makes their protection capacity for the retina significantly greater than only acting as an antioxidant. Implications of this include more capacity to slow the aging of the eye and preserve vision with aging. 

      NRF2 CELLULAR PROTECTION:

      • Nrf2 Increases Glutathione Levels in Retina - Glutathione reduces toxic and age accelerating lipid and protein peroxidation in retina.
      • Mitigates Oxidative Stress. Oxidative stress is a significant factor in the disease initiation and progression of AMD (Age Related Macular Degeneration) and other diseases of the eye. Therefore, lutein, zeaxanthn and meso zeaxanthin which significantly mitigate oxidative stress, may aid in the prevention of AMD.
      • Mitigates Inflammation of the retina. Oxidative Stress activates Inflammation pathways in the retina which becomes chronic is eye diseases.
      • Meso zeaxanthin has been shown in research studies to have especially strong anti-inflammation potential.

       

      VISION VITALITY MAX (LUTEIN | ZEAXANTHIN | MESO ZEAXANTHIN)

       

      REFERENCES:

      (1) Frede K, et al. Lutein Activates the Transcription Factor Nrf2 in Human Retinal Pigment Epithelial Cells. J Agric Food Chem. 2017 Jun 30

      (2) Liu H, et al. Protective effect of lutein on ARPE-19 cells upon H2O2-induced G2/M arrest.  Mol Med Rep. 2017 Jun 21.

      (3) Lima VC, et al. Macular pigment in retinal health and disease. Int J Retina Vitreous. 2016 Aug

      (4) Orhan C, et al. Mesozeaxanthin Protects Retina from Oxidative Stress in a Rat Model. Ocul Pharmocol Ther, 2016 Nov

      (5) Firdous AP. et al. Anti-inflammatory potential of carotenoid meso-zeaxanthin and its mode of action.  Pharm Biol. 2015 Jul;53(7):961-7.

      (6) Zou X, et al. Zeaxanthin induces Nrf2-mediated phase II enzymes in protection of cell death.  Cell Death Dis, 2014 May