Nutrition is a vital part of maintaining vision and overall eye health, with many expert studies suggesting that up to 25% of all nutrient intake goes to supporting our invaluable visual system. Beyond your eyes, this system also includes the nerves, blood vessels and parts of the brain that help to obtain and interpret the images that we see. Excellent overall eye health also helps prevent potentially vision threatening eye conditions such as cataracts, macular degeneration and glaucoma, as well as minor but significant conditions like dry eye.
Maintaining a balanced diet is an essential part of proper nutrition. Whole foods, including fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts, are very important and will help the body to absorb and metabolize nutrients that play an essential part in eye and vision health. Intake of sweets and other junk foods should also be limited, since the body loses chromium and B vitamins as it attempts to process white sugar. Medications, preservatives and caffeine all can deplete vitamins and minerals that are important for healthy eyes and vision.
Health experts have recommended specific foods that have proven to help keep your eyes healthy and your vision good. Dark leafy greens like spinach, kale and brussels sprouts, as well as dark berries like blueberries and blackberries can protect against serious conditions such as macular degeneration, which is the leading cause of vision loss in people over the age of 60. Omega-3 fatty acids, which can be absorbed from salmon and tuna, have been proven to reduce inflammation in the blood vessels of the eyes. This, along with proper control of blood sugar, can also help protect against diabetic retinopathy. Wheat grass has also been proven effective in the boosting of immune systems and reducing the chances of developing all diseases, including those that affect the eyes.
Unfortunately, not all of us have an easy time eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables every day. In this case, health professionals recommend incorporating at least one fruit or vegetable smoothie per day into your overall diet, which will allow you to get the required amount of greens per day in one easy meal or snack. Nutrients tend to absorb more quickly and effectively into the body in a liquid form, since the body does not have to work as hard to break it down.
Eating your way to good eye and visual health is easy with the right motivation and information. To learn more, contact your eye doctor today.