Scientific journal

51 2012

Journal of Food and Nutrition Research
Summary No. 4 / 2012

The nutraceutical potential of natural products in diabetic cataract prevention
Journal of Food and Nutrition Research, 51, 2012, No. 4, s. 185-200

Zuzana Kyselova, Laboratory of Cell Cultures, Institute of Experimental Pharmacology and Toxicology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Dúbravská cesta 9, SK 841 04 Bratislava, Slovakia. E-mail:

Summary: Recent reports indicate that consumption of fruits and vegetables, in particular those rich in polyphenols, decreased the incidence of diabetes mellitus type 2 as well as its associated secondary complications. Thus, the use of traditional medicines, mainly derived from plant sources, has become an attractive segment in the management of lifestyle diseases. Among many metabolic and age-related diseases, this review is devoted to debilitating eye lens opacification changes leading to diabetic cataract. The main cataractogenesis mechanisms are summarized and accordingly, the corresponding prospective anti-cataract agents are classified. The roles of antioxidants, inhibitors of non-enzymatic glycation, inhibitors of aldose reductase enzyme and inhibitors of calpain proteases are thoroughly discussed. This compilation focuses also on recent data about possible role of phytochemicals in the management of diseases and outlines nutraceutical concepts for diabetic cataract prevention. Finally, some dietary recommendations are suggested and further cataract research prospects are outlined.

Keywords: cataract; diabetes; phytochemical; polyphenol; flavonoid; nutraceutical

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