Review of Nutritional Supplementation Options for the Anterior Segment: An Evidence Based Approach


  • Allan Slomovic, MD, FRCSC Department of Ophthalmology, Toronto Western Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto
  • Manokamna Agarwal, MD Department of Ophthalmology, Toronto Western Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto



The anterior segment of the eye is a metabolically active system, which includes the ocular surface of the eye and extends posteriorly to the crystalline lens. Ocular surface diseases often disrupt the complex interplay of cornea, conjunctiva, meibomian glands, eyelids, and the lacrimal system, leading to diminished visual acuity and discomfort, and occasionally to frank pain. This can negatively impact the patient’s quality of life. Other anterior segment diseases including keratoconus, glaucoma, and cataract may also affect visual acuity. Oxidative stress and inflammation have been investigated in pathogenesis of these diseases. There has been an increase in the number of studies investigating various nutritional supplements benefiting the anterior segment structures. This review discusses the role of these supplements with supported clinical evidence. 

Author Biographies

Allan Slomovic, MD, FRCSC, Department of Ophthalmology, Toronto Western Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto

Dr. Slomovic is the Vice Chair of Education and Continuing Education Director for the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences at the University of Toronto. He is also the Clinical Director of the Cornea/External Disease Service at the Toronto Western Hospital, University Health Network. He is the past President of the Canadian Ophthalmologic Society and previous Chair of the Canadian Cornea and External Disease Society for the Canadian Ophthalmological Society. Dr. Slomovic is a Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Toronto and the Marta and Owen Boris Endowed Chair in Cornea and Stem Cell Research at the University Health Network. Prior to starting medical school, Dr. Slomovic completed a master’s degree in Clinical Psychology at the University of Montreal. He then went on to do his medical school training at Memorial University in St. John’s Newfoundland, followed by an internship in Internal Medicine at The Montreal General Hospital. Dr. Slomovic then went on to complete a 3-year residency training program at the New York University School of Medicine in Manhattan, New York. This was followed by 2 separate Fellowship programs at the Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami, Florida. The first fellowship was in Cornea/External Ocular Diseases and the second was in Laser Microsurgery. Dr. Slomovic has been involved with teaching residents and fellows, research and clinical practice over the past 35 years at the University Health Network. He was the program Director for Ophthalmology for the University of Toronto for 10 years (1991-2001) and has led the program through 2 successful Royal College reviews. He has also trained 47 fellows in Cornea/External Ocular Diseases of the Eye from all over the world, including Canada, United States, Israel, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, the Philippines, and Great Britain. In 2001, Dr. Slomovic was awarded the Mentor of the Year Award by the Royal College of Physicians of Canada.  Dr. Slomovic is the inaugural winner of this award in the province of Ontario. Dr. Slomovic has published numerous articles in the area of Cornea/External Diseases of the Eye and Refractive Surgery and has also lectured on these topics locally, nationally and internationally. In March 2014, Dr Slomovic was nominated by Toronto Life as one of Toronto’s best doctors. He has been nominated as one of Toronto’s “Top Doctors” by City Post for the past 3 consecutive years. 

Manokamna Agarwal, MD, Department of Ophthalmology, Toronto Western Hospital, University of Toronto, Toronto

Dr. Agarwal is currently working as a Cornea, External Diseases, and Refractive surgery fellow at the University of Toronto. After completing her residency in Ophthalmology and a long-term Cornea fellowship in India, she worked with Dr. Allan Slomovic as a research fellow in ocular surface disorders. Additionally, she also holds a postdoctoral fellowship in paediatric corneal diseases from SickKids in Toronto.


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How to Cite

Slomovic A, Agarwal M. Review of Nutritional Supplementation Options for the Anterior Segment: An Evidence Based Approach. Can Eye Care Today [Internet]. 2024 Jun. 18 [cited 2024 Jul. 24];3(2):4–9. Available from: