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This article suggests that UV protection reduces the risks of macular degeneration. However, UV does not reach the retina in the adult eye because it is stopped by the yellow-brown ocular lens pigment (OLP) that occurs in the lens of the eye with age. Visible light does reach the retina, and among the wavelengths of light that the eye associates with colors, it is the 'blue' and 'violet' region of wavelengths (also called the high energy visible light) that increase the risks of macular degeneration - particularly among those people with low levels of anti-oxidants in their blood - as recent science has shown. So good sunglasses should eliminate UV to reduce the risks of cataracts; but they should also reduce the high energy visible (HEV) light to reduce the risks of macular degeneration. The same is true for the skin, as once again science has shown; HEV photons from sunlight accounts for half of the free radicals created in the skin by sunlight. This is why melanin has a color; UV filtration alone would not impart color to melanin.

June 12, 2010 - 8:44am


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