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Green tea 'can help to protect the eyes'

Green tea 'can help to protect the eyes'
22nd April 2010

Drinking green tea may help fight a disease that robs many older people of their sight, new research has found.

The healthy chemicals in green tea actually penetrate the tissues of the eye, according to an article in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, which could help fight glaucoma and other eye diseases.

It has long been thought that catechins - antioxidants found in green tea - are capable of protecting the eye, but this study is the first to prove that they actually penetrate eye tissue.

The retina was the part of the eye that absorbed the highest concentration of catechins from the tea, while the effects of the drink lasted for up 20 hours.

"Our results indicate that green tea consumption could benefit the eye against oxidative stress," said study leader Chi Pui Pang.

Glaucoma affects around two per cent of people over 40 in the UK, equating to around 500,000 people, according to the Glaucoma Association.

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