The choices you make every day have an impact on your eyesight for years to come. Every day, we do things that are not healthy for our eyes. We eat junk food, we forget our sunglasses, and we continue habits that just aren’t good for us. Just by making better choices, we can prolong our healthy eyesight. Three of the top dangers to your eyesight are diet, sun exposure, and smoking. By understanding the dangers that these elements pose, you can make choices which will stop or counteract them. Hopefully, this will save your vision and improve it.
The food choices you make can affect so many aspects of your life. It can change the way you feel, the way your body looks, and the way you look at the world. The best foods for your eyes are those which are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Some of the most important vitamins for your eyes are vitamins A, C, and E. The antioxidants which are most helpful to your eyes are lutein and zeaxanthin.
There are several vitamins, minerals, and herbal supplements that are vital to good eyesight. It is not possible to get all the vitamins, minerals, and herbs you need from food alone daily. You would have to plan each meal extensively at the micronutrient level! To know you are getting adequate amounts of every vitamin, try a supplement like our Ocu-Plus Formula to fill in the gaps left by your diet.
Best Foods for Healthy Eyesight
Apricots – contain vitamin A
Avocados – contain vitamin E
Broccoli – contains lutein and zeaxanthin
Carrots – super high in vitamin A
Eggs – contain vitamin A, vitamin E and lutein
Hazelnuts – contain vitamin E
Kale – contains lutein and zeaxanthin
Kiwis – contain the highest density of vitamin C
Lettuce (romaine and green leaf) – contains lutein and zeaxanthin
Oranges – contain vitamin C
Peanut Butter – contains vitamin E
Spinach – contains vitamin E, lutein and zeaxanthin
Whole grains – contain vitamin E
A healthy diet is one that contains a variety of foods that are full of different vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. And, one that limits items like fat and sugar. Sugar is an item many of us consume way too much of. Plus, it has been connected to age-related macular degeneration.
To protect your eyes, consider increasing how often you are eating items on the list above. Perhaps you eat other foods which are high in vitamins A, C, and E, and contain the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. If you are not getting the adequate amount of vitamins and antioxidants from food alone, consider adding supplements to your routine.
2. Sun Exposure
Sometimes, nothing feels better on our skin than a little sunshine and warm air. We all need vitamin D, right? Even though it feels good on your skin, sunlight can be very dangerous to the health of your eyes. The UV rays from the sun can do permanent damage resulting in eye problems such as cataracts, pterygium, and macular degeneration.
There are two types of UV rays which affect different areas of the eye. The UVA rays radiate all the way to the back of the eye and UVB rays affect the front of the eye.
When you go outside to get your five minutes of vitamin D, protect your eyes. The best way to protect your eyes from sun damage is by wearing proper eyewear. Sunglasses are available with different ratings. It is important when you are purchasing sunglasses that you find a pair that provides 100 percent protection from UVA and UVB rays. The glasses should be close-fitting or wrap around to keep rays from coming in the gaps or sides. If you are unable to wear sunglasses, wear a wide-brimmed hat that provides coverage for your entire face.
If you enjoyed years of sunbathing in your youth, the chances of you facing macular degeneration when you’re older are increased. To treat any damage you may have done, check out our list of 17 vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements for overall eye health.
Sometimes, people believe that sun damage can only happen in the summer months, but it can happen year-round. Babies, toddlers, and children are also at risk. Make sure you are purchasing quality sunglasses for them, and not a cute pair with a cartoon character on them that has inferior UVA or UVB protection.
We all know that smoking is bad for our health. It can cause many different ailments, but did you know smoking is bad for your eyesight? Smoking can contribute to the development of optic neuropathy, dry eyes, cataracts, and age-related macular degeneration. Since smoking is a choice, it is one of the most controllable risk factors that people can change.
Optic neuropathy is damage to the optic nerve. Smoking decreases blood flow to every part of the body. This includes the eyes, and the decreased blood flow could result in damage to the optic nerve. Dry eyes can be very uncomfortable for the sufferer. Smoke can change the tear film of the eyes creating a dry feeling.
For others, the smoke acts as an irritant to the eyes, and a person will continually rub their eyes to relieve the itchy feeling. Smoking also increases the chance of glaucoma because it reduces the supply of antioxidants to the eyes. Some studies have found that smokers are twice as likely to develop cataracts than non-smokers.
Age-related macular degeneration is the deterioration of the retina which results in the reduced clarity of the vision. AMD is the leading cause of permanent vision loss among senior citizens. Smokers have been found to be three times as likely to develop AMD than non-smokers.
The good news is that by adding a couple of new routines to your day, you can counteract the damage done. These new routines include taking the right vitamins, minerals, and herbal supplements and incorporating daily eye exercises.
Simply by making better lifestyle choices, most people can decrease their chances of developing serious eye issues later in life. So, for a healthier life and better vision, try eating healthier, wear sun protection, and quit smoking.