Lutein and Zeaxanthin

The most prevalent carotenoids in nature are lutein and zeaxanthin. Fruits and vegetables get their distinctive color from a group of organic substances called carotenoids. Green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, and collard greens contain high levels of lutein and zeaxanthin. Other foods like eggs, corn, and oranges also contain these two carotenoids in trace amounts.

What are Lutein and Zeaxanthin?

Each molecule of lutein and zeaxanthin has 40 carbon atoms, 36 hydrogen atoms, and 1 oxygen atom, making them structurally similar. The location of a double bond within the molecules is the only distinction between these two molecules. Zeaxanthin has a double bond at its 10th and 11th carbon atoms, whereas lutein has one at its 11th and 12th carbon atoms.

What are the health benefits of lutein and zeaxanthin?

Numerous potential health advantages are attributed to lutein and zeaxanthin. These two carotenoids are well known as potent antioxidants that can aid in the body's ability to combat harmful free radicals. Inflammation can result from free radicals, which are unstable molecules that can harm cells. Many chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and Alzheimer's disease, involve an inflammation-related process.

Lutein and zeaxanthin are believed to contribute to healthy vision in addition to being antioxidants. The macula, the area of the eye that controls central vision, is where these two carotenoids are concentrated. According to studies, people who consume a lot of lutein and zeaxanthin have a lower risk of getting age-related macular degeneration, which is one of the main causes of blindness in older adults.

Additionally being investigated for their potential impact on cognitive health are lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids may aid in memory enhancement and offer defense against age-related cognitive decline, according to some research.

What foods contain lutein and zeaxanthin?

Foods rich in lutein and zeaxanthin can be found everywhere. Green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, and collard greens are the best sources of these carotenoids. Other foods like eggs, corn, and oranges contain lutein and zeaxanthin in smaller quantities.

Can I take lutein and zeaxanthin supplements?

Yes, Supplements containing lutein and zeaxanthin are indeed sold over the counter.And/or permanentRecurringGarnered a totalTablets or capsules are the most common forms in which these supplements are sold.Before taking any supplements, it's crucial to consult your doctor to make sure they are appropriate for you.


Since both lutein and zeaxanthin are fat-soluble and accumulate in the macula and lens of the eye, their pharmacokinetic behavior is comparable. Human serum and tissues contain more lutein than zeaxanthin, likely as a result of higher dietary intake. Peak serum concentrations are attained 4–6 hours after an oral dose. Then, with a half-life of 28 days, lutein and zeaxanthin are gradually excreted from the body. In contrast to other xanthophylls, neither serum nor urine have shown any metabolites.

The body uses lipoproteins to carry lutein and zeaxanthin around. High-density lipoproteins (HDLs) have lower concentrations than low-density lipoproteins (LDLs), which have the highest concentrations. The liver also absorbs lutein and zeaxanthin, incorporating them into very-low-density lipoproteins (VLDLs).

The best time to take supplements is with a fatty meal because doing so will increase absorption.

What are the side effects of lutein and zeaxanthin?

When consumed in the recommended dosages, lutein and zeaxanthin are generally regarded as safe. Minor side effects like gastrointestinal distress or skin rash may occur in some people. Usually minor, these side effects go away on their own.

Before taking lutein or zeaxanthin supplements, it's important to consult your doctor, especially if you have a medical condition or are taking other medications. It is crucial to confirm that these supplements are safe for you because some medications may interact with them.