Interviewer: It happens to everyone?
Alex Shortt: Unfortunately yes, but everyone’s different in terms of the rate at which our body ages.
The lens is made up of protein, and all of our bodies age slightly differently. There are genetic and environmental factors depending on how we’ve lived our lives, how much stress our bodies have been under and also how much ultraviolet light we’ve been exposed to.
And UV light is very important in terms of the development of cataract, because UV light in our environment enters our eyes and is absorbed by this natural lens.
And if we’ve been exposed to lots and lots of UV light over our lifetimes, we’ll get cataracts at an earlier time.
Interviewer: Right that means people who don’t wear sunglasses or people who perhaps are at high elevations, or people say in areas of the world that just have more sunlight.
Alex Shortt: Yes, that’s absolutely right and there’s large population studies that have shown that this is the case.
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