Lutein levels linked to greater physical activity in adults

Doctors reviewed 17 studies that compared lutein levels to physical activity in adults.

Studies that measured circulating lutein levels and physical activity found those with the highest lutein levels were 57 percent more active than those with the lowest levels. In several of the studies asking participants to report their diets and physical activity, higher lutein levels were linked to 20 to 600 percent greater levels of physical activity. 

Lutein is a yellow-colored carotenoid found in green leafy vegetables and is best known for its protective powers on the macula of the eye. Doctors believe it is the antioxidants in lutein that help maintain the integrity of cellular DNA, preventing genetic mutations that can lead to disease, and providing the benefits to physical activity. Physical activity also reduces the chances of developing chronic diseases.

Discussing the findings, doctors said, “If increasing lutein levels, or possibly also the levels of other carotenoids, is able to increase physical activity, this might be useful for improving physical activity to mitigate the chances of chronic disease.”

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