Eyesight: hazardous

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Source: The Daily Telegraph (Australian)http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/four-beers-a-day-can-make-you-blind/story-e6freuy9-1111118137431

Research shows men in their 60s who drink alcohol heavily are about six times more likely to develop the most debilitating form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD).

About 15 per cent of Australians are affected by the disease - where sight fades in the centre of the visual field - and one per cent will have the advanced or end-stage form that eventually steals sight.

Smoking and genetics have been linked to the condition but Dr Elaine Chong from the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital decided to study the diet and eye health of almost 7000 people over a period of time to determine the contribution of alcohol.

"We found that higher levels of alcohol, more than four standard drinks a day, was associated with a three-fold increase in end-stage AMD in men," Dr Chong said.