Omega-3 can ease dry eye symptoms in various ways


Dry eye occurs when lacrimal glands do not produce tears properly, or when the tears are not of the correct consistency and evaporate too quickly. It can be a symptom of chronic inflammation of the conjunctiva (the membrane that covers the front part of the eye), or the lacrimal gland. If left untreated, dry eye can produce pain, ulcers, or scars on the cornea.

The cornea is the transparent part of the coat of the eyeball that covers the iris and pupil. It helps protect the eye from germs and dust, and lets light through to the interior. The cornea has no blood vessels to nourish; instead, it receives its nourishment from the tears and the watery fluid that fills the chamber behind it. Under the cornea there is a delicate network of nerve endings which are responsible for the sensations of touch, pain, and temperature and play an important role in the blink reflex, wound healing, and tear production and secretion.

Omega-3 fatty acids supplementation has neuroprotective effects in these nerve endings that are associated with improvement in the water content of tears. Besides, omega-3 appear to improve function in the eye’s meibomian glands, which produce the oily part of tears, and decrease symptoms of irritation. In addition, inflammation of the surface of the eye may occur along with dry eye, worsening the symptoms. The omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil reduce inflammation; so, it makes sense that a supplement of omega-3 could help also in this way. All these effects can ease dry eye symptoms.




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