Consumption of caffeine prevents against the formation of cataracts due to ultraviolet (UV) light radiation, according to study results published in the October edition of the Journal of Ocular Pharmacology and Therapeutics.
Shambu D. Varma of the departments of biochemistry and ophthalmology and visual sciences at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, US and colleagues examined the effects of xanthine-based alkaloids, including caffeine, on in vitro mouse lens cultures.
The team found that exposure of the lenses to UV radiation at 302 nm decreased active transportation of the ion 86Rb+ (a K+ analogue), and also decreased levels of adenosine triphosphate and glutathione. Introducing caffeine into the cultures insulated the lenses against this physiological damage.
Thus the team concluded that caffeine does indeed prevent the lens degradation and cataract formation that is caused by exposure to UV light.