Whey Protein and dry eyes?
I thought i would share something with this site.I have had a few patients that after taking a whey protein supplement for about a month have noticed less dry eye symptoms, most of these patients were over 65. I started thinking about it and came up with a theory. If a patients blood test reveals intracellular deficiencies of Glutathione then a few ways to raise the glutathione are with oral N-acetylcysteine or undenatured whey protein. Whey protein is a good source of cysteine, an essential amino acid that is the precurssor to glutathione. There are studies that suggest taking N-acetylcysteine may benefit blepharitis and dry eyes, so just maybe it is the antioxidant Glutathione that is responsible for this improvement . The patients that come to mind are a few that were deficient in glutathione and started taking a whey proteins supplement to help with this deficiency, but also i have had a few athletes with post lasik dry eyes and once they started on a undenatured whey protein supplement their dry eyes improved as well. So could it be coicidence, was it time for their dry eyes to go away? I cant say for sure, but now i will certainly look inot this a little deeper. Patients with elevated homecystein tend to have a higher rate of macular degeneration and dry eyes, is it do to their age? Homecystein is broken down into the amino acid cysteine which is needed to make glutathione!! If your body does not convert homecystein to cysteine the intracellular glutathione conversion wont take place. B-12. B6 and folic acid can bring the homecystein levels down. hhmmmm very interesting? Who knows one day maybe we will see that lowering homecystein and elevating glutathione may be something for dry eyes? Many of Americans arent getting enough protein in our diets anyway> Think about it , how many of you eat toast, oatmeal and coffee for breakfast? Maybe whey protein with some blueberries in it and take your B complex! What could it hurt ,you would at least have an optimally performing immune system (glutathione), less risk of occlusive artery disease (lowering homecystein) and maybe prevent some muscle loss at the same time. I will keep all of you posted when i have more clinical data. Anything at all that i think may be safe and benefitial to our dry eye population , i will share. Keep the Faith!
Michael Lange OD
Lange Eye Care/Lange Eye Institute