Glutathione plays a significant role in the protection of the eyes from oxidative stress, which leads to unclear eyesight and sometimes blindness. There have been previous studies exemplifying the fact that when faced with a lack of glutathione in the eyes, there is a greater chance of Open-Angle Glaucoma, Macular Degeneration and Cataracts. As we get older, we are unable to see things as clearly and then we need reading glasses. This is called presbyopia. Your eyes create glutathione to protect against the oxidation that the sun produces according to Dr. Daria Davidson, a board certified medical doctor focusing on holistic medicine with 30 years of practice.
If you have free radicals from oxidative stress, you need an antioxidant to reduce the free radical-an oxidation reduction reaction. Glutathione donates and extra electron to accomplish this. This reducing environment is maintained by enzymes and components like glutathione that maintain the constant status of metabolic energy which is ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) in the cell.
Without ATP the cell becomes sluggish. In some respects ATP is like oil or lubrication is to an engine. Disturbances of the oxidative state cause toxic effects to the DNA.
Oxidative stress contributor to many different health issues, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease, atherosclerosis, heart failure, heart attack, and so on according to Wikipedia.
Glutathione is the guardian of the cell. Glutathione neutralizes free radicals better than anything, and is the best thing you can have to support the function and structure of your body in every cell. Along with keeping glutathione levels high it's beneficial to keep superoxide dismutases (SOD) and coenzyme q10 levels too too.
According to the statistics in this country age macular degeneration is second only to diabetes in causing blindness. World wide the number one cause of blindness is cataracts. In Australia, the number one cause is open-angle glaucoma. But what's important is that all three of these conditions are related with low levels of glutathione in the eye.
Journal of Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics in April of 2000 an article concluded that glutathione is a reducing compound that normally exists in an unusually high concentration in the lens where it functions as a accentual antioxidant and is vital for maintenance of the tissues transparency.
Cataracts are caused by the lens becoming cloudy. This article is specifically related to cataracts. Glaucoma and macular degeneration although are not a lens issue.
The article goes on to say, "In conjuction with glutathione the oxidation reduction cycle located in the lens epithelium detoxifies this potentially dangerous oxidant." The depletion of glutathione or the inhibition of the cycle to occur causes oxidative damage resulting in a clouding of the lens, "which is what cataracts are.
An article in Ocular Service 2007 reports that a deficiency in glutathione has been linked to ocular disease and viral infection. Glutathione protects the mucosa of the eye and is the most abundantly internally produced antioxidant in tear fluid.
According to Dr. Davidson, tear ducts that lubricate the surface of the eye also let some glutathione go outside of the cell that also deals with free radical damage. The glutathione that your body produces is literally the guardian of the cell. Even though some eye drops contain glutathione, it's not nearly as useful as glutathione that your body makes inside the cells.
An article titled The Role of Oxidative Stress in Glaucoma published in Mutation research in 2006 states that there is more and more evidence indicating that free radicals play a key role in the creation of Open-Angle Glaucoma which is the main cause of irreversible blindness worldwide.
This article suggests that Glaucoma is the main cause of blindness world wide whereas other sources claim that cataracts are. In either case, glutathione is a major player.
An article in Progress in Retinal and Eye Research in 2003 reported that high levels of glutathione in the lens are believed to protect enzymes and structural proteins for effective biological functioning. It also reported that aging lenses under oxidative stress have diminished levels of glutathione.
In summary glutathione is needed for every cell in your eyes to function optimally. We know that certain cells under particular stress such as liver cells have a very high amount of glutathione because they are the washing machine of the body. Lungs are also high in glutathione to handle the toxins that we breathe. Skin is high in glutathione to deal with the free radical damage caused by sunlight and the eyes are likewise high in glutathione because they too are exposed to sunlight. If you keep your eyes healthy, the likely hood of getting a diagnosis of cataracts, glaucoma or macular degeneration goes down.