According to new studies performed at the University of Georgia, the more yellow pigment you have in your eyes, the better you’re able to see in hazy conditions. The researchers there performed an experiment in which they set up a simulation of hazy conditions so that they could test how far people with varying amounts of yellow pigment could see through the haze.
What is Yellow Pigment Exactly and Why is it Important?
Yellow pigment, also referred to as macular pigment, is made up of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are two nutrients found in a variety of different foods and supplements. Yellow pigment protects the photoreceptors in your eyes and enhances different aspects of your vision.
The researchers gathered volunteers who had different amounts of yellow pigment in their eyes and observed how far each of the volunteers could see in the haze and then compared that distance to the amount of macular pigment each of them had.
The results of the study concluded that the people who had more yellow pigment in their eyes were able to see objects more clearly in the distance through the haze. The people with the highest amounts of yellow pigment were able to see two times farther than the people with the lowest amounts of yellow pigment.
The conclusion that you can take from these results is that if you can increase the amount of yellow pigment in your eyes, you are more likely to be able to see clearer and farther in hazy situations. Plus, it would enhance your vision in many other ways as well.
Increasing Yellow Pigment
If you don’t have a lot of yellow pigment in your eyes, it’s because you are not getting an adequate amount of lutein and zeaxanthin in your daily diet. To get more of these nutrients into your body, you need to consume dark green leafy vegetables, such as spinach or kale, and bright colored fruits and veggies, such as oranges or bell peppers.
Consuming more of these foods that contain lutein and zeaxanthin will help other aspects of your body and eye health as well. The more of the nutrients you consume, the lower your risk is for developing age-related macular degeneration and staying healthy in general, as proper nutrition feeds and restores the cells in our bodies, helping them ward off disease and keeping them strong.
In addition, as you consume more of these nutrients, the yellow pigment will become thicker and be able to protect the rods and cones in your eyes better. The thicker the layer of yellow pigment is, the more it will reduce your eyes’ sensitivity to light, decrease glares, increase how fast your eyes process the things you see, and improve contrast sensitivity.
The majority of people aren’t eating anywhere close to the recommended daily serving of these foods, so if you know you’ve been slacking a bit on consuming enough fruits and veggies, it isn’t just you. It seems to be the norm in today’s world where everyone is on the go constantly and life gets so chaotic at times, it’s a bit difficult to eat properly.
This shouldn’t be an excuse, though. On the contrary, you should look at the lack of overall concern as a major problem and work towards fixing it. Start making changes; the first step is to make an effort to eat better.
Supplementing Your Nutrition
While it’s a good idea that you improve the way you eat and increase the amounts of fruits and vegetables you eat every day, you can also take dietary supplements to make up the difference. There are many nutrients and vitamins that are especially good for the eyes, other than just lutein and zeaxanthin. In fact, there are 17 vitamins and nutrients that work to promote good eye health:
- Alpha-Lipoic Acid
- Copper Gluconate
- Ginkgo Biloba
- N-Acetyl Cysteine
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
- Lutein with zeaxanthin
These nutrients and vitamins lower your risk for developing various eye diseases, improve your vision, strengthen your eye muscles, and help you maintain healthy eyesight. You should be trying to get as many of these nutrients into your system as you can each day and taking a supplement that contains all of these is the easiest way to do it.
No matter how old you are or what eye and vision problems you currently have, it’s never too late to try and keep your eyes as healthy as possible. Although, the earlier you start taking care of your eyes, the better the results are in the long run.
Not many people consider that the food they eat has an impact on their eyes and their vision, but the fact is that it does, which makes it even more important to make sure you eat a healthy diet rich with fruits and veggies.