If you’ve been looking for an excuse to make sure you and your kids spend more time outdoors, you may have just found it. According to new studies, natural light is extremely beneficial for the development and ongoing health of your eyes. Spending just three hours a day outside soaking up that natural light can lower the risk of children and young adults developing myopia, or nearsightedness as it’s commonly known.
Dopamine, which is a chemical located in the eye that controls the normal growth and development of the eyeball, is stimulated by natural light. The reason why this is important is because if the eyeball grows abnormally and is too long then it will send images to the retina that are out of focus. In other words, it will cause nearsightedness.
It’s especially important for younger kids to be exposed to natural light for the recommended three hours a day because their eyes are still in the development stage, and if it’s possible to reduce their risk of becoming nearsighted and having to wear corrective lenses for the rest of their life, why not plan more outdoor activities to do together.
Artificial Light Can Harm Vision
Although the discovery that natural light helps eyesight is relatively new, it has been known for quite some time now that artificial light can actually be harmful to your eyesight. It is thought that the more time you spend indoors under artificial lighting, the more vision problems you will struggle with.
Fluorescent lighting can bring on eye strain and headaches because of the way the light flickers. In addition, incandescent lights, which are common in homes, can also cause eye strain and other serious eye issues. Not to mention that artificial lighting has the tendency to be brighter in certain areas than in others and your eyes may have difficulty adjusting properly to that change in light.
The Elderly Benefit Too
Natural light isn’t only beneficial to kids and young adults. According to a study found in the British Journal of Ophthalmology, natural light is even more important for the elderly because it helps to lower the risk for cataracts. Other research shows that although the elderly need natural light more than younger people do, it is harder for their bodies to absorb it.
Blue light is contained within the natural light spectrum and it is necessary for your body to be able to maintain healthy biorhythms. As you age, so does the lens in the back of the eye and over time it becomes harder and harder for the lens to absorb that blue light, which can decrease the amount of melatonin that your brain produces. As a result, your sleep-wake cycles are thrown off and you may begin to experience insomnia or other issues with sleeping and it can lead to other health issues such as heart disease and depression.
Therefore, the more time that the elderly spend outdoors in the natural light the better able their bodies will be able to absorb enough of that blue light that will help to fight off diseases and eye conditions, such as cataracts, and improve their overall health.
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Protect Your Eyes
Any time you are outdoors you should take precautions to protect yourself from the sun’s UV rays. As far as scientists understand, the UV light from the sun isn’t needed to improve your eye health, but rather, UV rays can damage your eyes, so it’s important to protect your eyes and your skin at all times when outside.
To protect your eyes from being damaged, always wear sunglasses that are designed to block UV rays and hats whenever you are outside. It’s important to make sure your kids always wear these items as well. In addition, don’t forget to put on sunscreen to protect your skin as well.
As an alternative to spending the full three hours a day outside, you can also let as much natural light into your home as possible by pulling back the curtains and drawing up the blinds. There are also light bulbs on the market nowadays that are referred to as daylight bulbs which are designed to mimic natural light. They probably are not as effective for keeping your eyes healthy as true natural light, but daylight bulbs are a great alternative to the other types of light bulbs that can cause vision problems.
One last thing you can do to improve your vision is to try daily eye vitamins. Thousands of people with nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatisms have successfully used natural vision supplements that contain eye-healthy vitamins and nutrients, like those found in our Ocu-Plus Formula, to improve their vision, some to the point where they no longer require corrective lenses at all anymore to see clearly. They’re easy to incorporate into your daily diet and they really work. Anything is worth trying if it means your eyes will get stronger and your vision will improve, right?
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