Maintaining our eyes health is crucial. For many, losing their sight is the worst scenario possible. Aside from regular visits to your local ophthalmologist, what can we do in our day to day lives to ensure that we are helping to maintain and improve the condition of our eyes?
In today’s article, we will be focusing on one important aspect which we often neglect that can play a significant part in the overall health of our eyesight… Our diet.
Maintaining a balanced diet rich in vitamins and nutrients found to have a positive impact on our eye’s health is necessary. We will go over some of these nutrients and also point out great food sources where they can be found in abundance.
Getting sufficient amounts of Vitamin A is important for experiencing and maintaining good vision. In fact, ophthalmologist in Cape Town have reported that vitamin A deficiencies are a leading cause of blindness in children among the poor in South Africa.
Vitamin A aids in the effectiveness of the cornea’s (eyes surface) ability to shield the eye from viruses and bacteria, thus tremendously reducing the risk of eye infections and macular degeneration. Not having sufficient amounts of vitamin A causes vision loss, retina damage and corneal ulcers due to the cornea becoming very dry. This is why vitamin A drops are such an effective treatment for patients suffering from dry eyes.
Vitamin C and Bioflavonoids
Vitamin C has numerous benefits for one’s overall health, but when dealing specifically with eye-care, vitamin C and bioflavonoids play an important role in servicing the collagen found in the cornea of our eyes as well as strengthening the health of delicate capillaries located in the retina.
Vitamin C is believed to reduce the risk of vision loss from macular degeneration and cataract formation. Fruits and vegetables high in vitamin c are also great sources of bioflavonoids.
When advising on good preventative eye care, most ophthalmologists recommend the use of a daily multivitamin rich in Vitamin E as it’s believed to help in the prevention of cataract formation as well as playing a role in preventing macular degeneration.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Aside from being required by the body to produce compounds which assist in regulating ones heart rate and blood pressure, fatty acids are essential for the production and functioning of the cells, organs and muscles.
Omega-3 is believed to help protect against dry eye and macular degeneration. It is also believed to greatly reduce the risk of being afflicted with glaucoma because of its effective assistance in the drainage of intraocular fluid from the eye. This essential fatty acid cannot be produced by the body so we have to get it from food.
Lutein and Zeaxanthin
Lutein and Zeaxanthin are believed to greatly reduce eye damage which directly results from exposure to light by blocking blue light from reaching lower levels of the retina, as they are prominently found in the macula of our eyes.
Studies have shown that Lutein and Zeaxanthin helps to prevent macular degeneration as well as slowing down regression in people already inflicted with it.
Foods that contain these essential eye-care nutrients
Rich in Vitamin E and Omega-3
Great source of bioflavonoids
Contain Vitamin E, Zinc and Niacin
Excellent source of Vitamin C and bioflavonoids
Colorful fruits and vegetables
High in Vitamin A and Vitamin C
High in vitamin A and lutein
Great source of Lutein and Zeaxanthin
Excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids