Lutein and Zeaxanthin: Adverse Reactions. Interactions. Pregnancy Use.

2010

Toxicity

Lutein and zeaxanthin are generally recognised as safe in doses up to 2 mg/kg.

Adverse Reactions

Insufficient reliable information available.

Significant Interactions

VITAMIN C

Lutein showed increased antioxidant efficacy with vitamin C in an animal study. Further to this, a small in vivo study showed 2000 mg of vitamin C enhanced the absorption of lutein.

VITAMIN E

Vitamin E showed increased antioxidant efficacy with lutein according to an animal study.

PHYTOSTEROLS

High dietary intake of phytosterol esters (5.5 g/day) reduced plasma levels of lutein by 14% in a small clinical trial; however, this was reversed by increasing fruit and vegetable intake.

ORLISTAT

Theoretically, long-term use of orlistat leads to reduced plasma levels of lutein due to reduced gastric absorption (Medicines Handbook) — increased dietary intake of lutein should be considered.

OLESTRA

Lutein and zeaxathin levels have been found to decrease with long-term use of olestra — increased dietary intake of lutein should be considered.

Contraindications and Precautions

Lutein and zeaxathin is contraindicated in people with a hypersensitivity to these carotenoids or their food sources.

Pregnancy Use

Eating dietary amounts of foods rich in lutein and zeaxathin is likely to be safe. Women at risk of premature rupture of the membranes are cautioned against very high intake because one study observed a fourfold greater risk of membrane rupture with high serum lutein levels.