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What is Macular Degeneration?; The Role of Aerobic Exercise in Macular Health

With this email, MedOp Health launches a newsletter for patients who want to know more about maintaining healthy vision. Healthy Eyes Report focuses on sharing information about macular degeneration, dry eye and general eye health.

Our contributing writer, Dr. Eric Buensuceso, O.D will explain the science of vision, and provide valuable information and tips on how to retain your eye health and prevent progression of advanced macular degeneration.

We hope you benefit from and enjoy the Healthy Eyes Report and want to make it your “go to” healthy vision resource. So we need to hear from you! Please give us your feedback and tell us what you want to know more about in future issues.


signature of V Gallichio

Volker Gallichio
Vice-President, MedOp Health

In This Issue

  • FROM THE DOCTOR: What is Macular Degeneration?
  • EXERCISE: The Role of Aerobic Exercise in Macular Health
From the Doctor - Dr. Eric Buensuceso O.D.

Hello there! My name is Dr. Eric Buensuceso. I’ve been a practicing optometrist for the last 23 years and I’d like to answer some common questions about Macular Degeneration. So, for those of you who are curious about what Macular Degeneration is and how it affects your life, you get to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth!

What is Macular Degeneration?

Macular Degeneration is a retinal eye disease that progressively deteriorates an area of your retina called the Macula. The Macula is responsible for your central or “straight ahead” vision. Over time, this disorder can lead to a blurred and then, permanent loss of central vision.

What is Macular Degeneration?

Out of all the questions I get, this is the most frightening for most people. So, let me assure you that even though it affects your “straight ahead vision”, it is not blindness. Your side or peripheral vision remains intact and your central vision can be managed by special eye doctors called Retinal Specialists to prolong the central vision you do have.
Also, Macular Degeneration comes in two forms. The first one is the mild and very manageable version called Dry Macular Degeneration and a more severe one called Wet Macular Degeneration.

What’s the difference between Dry Macular Degeneration and Wet Macular Degeneration?

Dry Macular Degeneration affects over 85% of senior citizens and is responsible for a mild loss of your central vision. The goal is to extend Dry Macular Degeneration so that it does not go into Wet Macular Degeneration.

Wet Macular Degeneration affects a much smaller population of senior citizens and is characterized by a more severe central vision loss. In next month’s article, I will talk in detail about how to identify the more common risk factors to Macular Degeneration especially among certain groups of people who are more at risk than others.

What can I do to prevent Macular Degeneration?

Here are three things you can do to help prevent Macular Degeneration.

  • Using wrap-around sunglasses, hats and caps can block radiation from entering the eye and cut the risk of damage.
  • A diet rich in leafy green vegetables, low carbohydrate consumption, omega 3 fatty acids and other helpful nutrients can help mitigate the damage caused by free radicals.
  • Vitamin supplements rich in Lutein, Zeaxanthin, Zinc and Omega 3 fatty acids can also help prevent Macular Degeneration. That’s why the MaxiVision brand of supplements contain twice the amount of Lutein and Zeaxanthin than the drugstore brands to make sure you get what you need to fight Macular Degeneration.

I’ll share more tips you can use for preserving your central vision in future issues.

Fitness banner, with older people exercising with swimming, situps, and walking

The Role of Aerobic Exercise in Macular Health

Exercise consisting of aerobic effort such as walking, hiking, running, biking or swimming can greatly improve your chances of preventing and treating Macular Degeneration. When you move your body, it greatly increases the circulation of blood in your heart, lungs, and especially your retina.

In Macular Degeneration, there is a problem of not getting enough blood flow and oxygen to the photoreceptor cells, waste accumulates, and photoreceptor cells die. That’s why a daily regimen of at least 20 minutes a day of aerobic exercise is so important in helping with Macular Degeneration so that the Macula gets its needed blood supply to operate properly.