Keep a Healthy Eye on Your Game

Keep a Healthy Eye on Your Game

Professor Andrea Holmes, PhD  
Member of SummaForte Advisory Committee  
Founder/Director of the Cannabis Studies Department, Doane University

Amanda McKinney, M.D.
Board Member, American College of Lifestyle Medicine

Keep a Healthy Eye on Your Game!

While screen time is an inescapable part life, it IS life for gamers.  Feel that dryness and strain in your eyes after looking at a screen for hours?  A steady stream of short wavelengths blasting your eyes cause some longer-term damage. Casual gamers tend to spend 2-4 hours a day in front of screens while professional and performance gamers can spend 10 hours or more gaming daily. The blue light emitted by their screens has a short wavelength that releases enough energy to create digital eye strain (“DES”). As many as 60% of Americans have symptoms of DES, and the proportion is likely higher with gamers. Additionally, overexposure to blue light – like sunlight – can exacerbate macular degeneration that in turn can cause vision loss. So gamers need to be aware of these risks to their health and performance and make sure they are addressing them. 

What is Lutein and how can it help with DES and Macular Degeneration?

Lutein is a carotenoid vitamin in the same family as beta-carotene and vitamin A. It is often called "the eye vitamin" and is used to prevent age-related macular degeneration (“AMD”) and cataracts, both of which lead to vision loss. As a color pigment in the macula and retina of the eye, Lutein acts like a filter to protect the eye from damage from blue light and sunlight. Lutein supplementation could also help reduce the symptoms of visual fatigue (closely related to Dry Eye Syndrome) which would likely impact gamers’ ability to focus and accurately react. This is great news for gamers!

How can you bolster lutein?

Lutein is found in foods that are yellow or orange in color like carrots, cantaloupe, corn, orange and yellow peppers, salmon and egg yolks. It’s also present in green leafy vegetables like, kale, spinach, broccoli, peas and lettuce as well as certain wheat products like pasta.  But many people either don’t like the taste or simply don’t find the time to eat enough of these foods.  SummaMix contains 10 mg of lutein which, if taken daily with a meal for about 30 days, can improve the health of your eyes. Give it a try!