A new study finds higher levels of MPOD (macula pigment optical density), a measure of Lutein levels in the brain and eye, is associated with higher IQ levels. Data from the study showed a higher MPOD level was an independent predictor of fluid intelligence, the ability to problem solve in unique situations and to think creatively in regard to everyday challenges, and IQ levels.
114 obese and overweight individuals between the ages of 25 and 45 participated in this study. Individuals who are overweight and obese are known to be at risk for having a lower MPOD status.
Many studies in children, the elderly, middle age individuals and primates show Lutein’s importance in brain health. The link between Lutein’s ability to support the eye and the brain is not a surprise since the brain and the eyes are connected. In recent studies from pediatric brain tissue samples, Lutein made up about 60% of the total carotenoids identified in the brain tissue. Considering Lutein makes up 12% of the carotenoids found in the diet, a preference for Lutein in the brain seems evident.
Prior studies have also shown higher blood levels of Lutein and Zeaxanthin are associated with better executive function, memory and cognition.
Further studies are needed.
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