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By Dr. Brian McDonough, Medical Editor

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – As a child you were probably told to eat your carrots because they will help you see better. It is true! Carrots are rich in the nutrient beta carotene, and this significantly reduces risk of age-related macular degeneration.

Macular degeneration is a progressive eye condition that attacks the macula which impacts central vision. The condition affects fifteen million people in the United States alone. It rarely causes complete blindness, but it robs you of all but your outermost peripheral vision, leaving just dim images, or black holes at the center of your vision.

Beta carotene isn’t the only thing that helps. Vitamin E and Zinc can make a difference as well.

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