Beta-Carotene was included in the original Age-Related Eye Disease Study formulation.
Since AREDS 1, scientific studies have shown that supplementation with beta-carotene can increase the risk of lung cancer in smokers. High levels of beta-carotene in the body can compete with lutein for transport to the tissues. As a result of these findings, AREDS 2 is investigating the effects of a supplement without beta-carotene.
Beta-carotene from food is safe and is important to maintain eye health. Sweet potatoes and carrots have an important place in an eye-friendly diet.
Palozza P, Serini S, Di Nicuolo F. Beta-carotene exacerbates DNA oxidative damage and modifies p53-related pathways of cell proliferation and apop- tosis in cultured cells exposed to tobacco smoke condensate. Carcinogenesis. 2004;25:1315-25.
Mannisto S, Smith-Warner SA, Spiegelman D. Dietary carotenoids and risk of lung cancer in a pooled analysis of seven cohort studies. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2004;13:40–48. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-038-3.