JAMA -- Abstract: Dietary Intake of Antioxidants and Risk of Age-Related Macular Degeneration, December 28, 2005, van Leeuwen et al. 294 (24): 3101
We have known that antioxidants are useful in slowing disease progression in those who have already been diagnosed with AMD, but it was not known if antioxidants reduced the risk of developing AMD in the first place.
This study concludes:
"a high dietary intake of beta carotene, vitamins C and E, and zinc was associated with a substantially reduced risk of AMD in elderly persons."
So perhaps we can counsel patients concerned about AMD (perhaps those with a family history of AMD) that antioxidants may be worth taking even if they have not developed signs of it.