Una dieta sana previene la cataratta

La cataratta è una malattia dell’occhio che provoca un abbassamento progressivo della vista e può portare alla cecità. In Italia, secondo l’Istat, colpisce circa l’8,5% della popolazione anziana. Ma è per forza una condizione inevitabile? A quanto pare, no. Secondo uno studio pubblicato sulla rivista Archives of Ophthalmology, ovvero JAMA, le donne che seguono una dieta corretta vedono ridurre significativamente il rischio di sviluppare la cataratta. Lo affermano i ricercatori dell’University of Wisconsin, negli Usa, i quali hanno condotto una ricerca che ha coinvolto 1.808 donne di età compresa tra i 55 e gli 86 anni che partecipavano al programma Carotenoids in Age-Related Eye Disease Study.

La dott.ssa Julie A. Mares e colleghi hanno analizzato dapprima le risposte ottenute tramite un questionario che verteva sulle abitudini alimentari delle partecipanti. Dopodiché hanno verificato la presenza della malattia oculare. Si è scoperto che il 29% delle donne erano affette da cataratta nucleare in almeno uno dei due occhi. Inoltre il 16% ha riferito di aver subito un intervento per l’estrazione della cataratta.

Nel totale, il 41%  delle partecipanti mostrava di avere la cataratta o in un occhio o in entrambi, oppure riferiva di essere stata oggetto di estrazione. Il dato che ha destato più interesse è che la minore incidenza di cataratta si aveva nelle donne che seguivano una dieta sana e ricca di vitamine e minerali. Come affermano i ricercatori,

“I risultati di questo studio indicano che una dieta sana è fortemente legata alla minore presenza di cataratta nucleare, più legata di qualsiasi altro fattore di rischio modificabile o fattore protettivo studiato in questo campione di donne”.

In conclusione, questo studio si aggiunge al corpo di letteratura che suggerisce che una dieta sana è associata a un minor rischio per la cataratta. Miglioramenti nello stile di vita che includono una dieta sana, come lo smettere di fumare, l’evitare l’obesità possono abbassare la necessità e l’onere economico della chirurgia della cataratta nelle donne mature.

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