Resveratrol may help prevent age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

AMD is the progressive deterioration of the part of the eye needed for fine detail and central vision, which is needed for everyday tasks such as reading and driving.124 This eye area is called the macula, which is the central, back part of the retina—the part of the eye that receives light and what we see and converts it into electrical signals that get sent to the brain.124 AMD is the leading cause of vision loss in industrialized countries, and unfortunately is thought to be irreversible and difficult to treat.122 Resveratrol may be able to help prevent this damage, which is caused by multiple factors.

Types of AMD

AMD occurs in either dry or wet form, but all people who have had the wet form started out with the dry form first.124

How Does Resveratrol Help AMD?
Effect Way It Works Level of Evidence
Prevents damage from light exposure.125
  • Reduces activation of high levels of proteins (stimulated by light exposure) involved in development of abnormal blood vessels.125-126
  • Stimulates SIRT1 gene activity which helps the body respond to damage.125
Animal studies.125-126
Prevents and eliminates abnormal blood vessels.46
  • Inhibits free radical stimulation of inflammatory proteins and secretion of the growth factor VEGF, which is known to promote blood vessel growth in the wet form of AMD.10,127γ
  • Works by activating an enzyme that then blocks the protein that produces these blood vessels.46
  • May blocks production of inflammatory proteins and VEGF caused by high sugar levels.49 However, other lab studies suggest that resveratrol may have the opposite effect at the low doses (1-10 μM) used in the above-mentioned study.128
Lab and animal experiments.10,46
Prevents dysfunction, damage, and cell death from toxic chemicals in cigarette smoke (such as acrolein and hydrogen peroxide).129
  • The retina has a thin layeri that separates which is responsible for removing cellular debris from normal shedding of photoreceptor cell outer layers. Resveratrol restores the ability of this layer to get rid of this debris before it causes damage.46130
Lab studies.46,130

  • Retinal pigment epithelium.
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