Lutein is a natural carotenoid that is found in many different green leafy vegetables. It is used as an antioxidant and in plants as a fatty-acid ester. Eating foods such as kale, spinach, egg yolks and animal fats can provide you with a good dose of lutein. Most of us get a good amount of lutein in our daily diet without the need for additional supplements or dietary planning.
Lutein has many uses, but its main use is as a pigment. It absorbs blue light, meaning that it produces a yellow color. It's most often used in chicken feed to create the yellow color of broiled chicken. This is because customers said they found the yellow chicken skin to be more appealing to look at than the natural white skin. This coloring has little to do with the taste, texture or even health of the chickens; it's simply a preference that most chicken-eating customers had at the time of the polling.
Lutein also appears in human eyes, especially in the retina. In addition, it appears as part of our natural diets as it is found in many vegetables and fruits. For those who don't eat many fruits and vegetables, there are lutein supplements. Lutein combinations, as in lutein and other vitamins and herbs combined into one supplement, are very common. As it stands, there is no recommended daily allowance for lutein, although six milligrams or more a day have been shown to have positive effects.
While lutein is usually taken as a pill or a nasal spray, it can also be found in eye drops. Ocuvite lutein drops contain antioxidant supplements that can help the eyes. By using these lutein eye drops, you can get all of the daily recommended values of vitamins E, C, zinc and copper. These types of nutritional eye drops aren't used by many people yet, but they are gaining in popularity.