What to Eat to Protect your Eye Health
You know it’s important to eat a healthy diet, but do you know that what you eat can make a big difference for your eye health? Research indicates that a nutrient-dense diet can greatly reduce the risk of eye problems related to the aging process. Do you know what to eat to protect your eye health?
- Eat fish, for the omega-3 fatty acids. Go for oily fish like tuna, salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines, and herring, to combat dry eye and protect against macular degeneration.
- Nuts, seeds, and legumes contain high levels of vitamin E. Vitamin E can protect against age-related eye damage, and the best choices for eye health are walnuts, Brazil nuts, cashews, peanuts, lentils, chia seeds, flax seeds, and hemp seeds.
- The vitamin C in citrus fruits is an AOA-recommended antioxidant. Like vitamin E, vitamin C fights age-related damage to the eyes. Lemons, oranges, and grapefruits are all good sources of vitamin C. You can also find vitamin C in strawberries, bell peppers, broccoli, and cantaloupe.
- Leafy greens have vitamin C and more. Greens like spinach, kale, turnips, and collards are also rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, which help protect eyes from sun damage as well as reducing the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. Other good sources of these nutrients include broccoli, peas, kiwi, red grapes, yellow squash, oranges, corn, mango, and honeydew melon. It’s best to eat these fruits and vegetables with a little bit of healthy fat, like olive oil or avocado, to help your body properly absorb the nutrients.
- Carrots and sweet potatoes are rich in vitamin A and beta carotene. These nutrients can help slow macular degeneration, decrease the risk of eye infections, and help in the production of rhodopsin, a protein that helps the retina absorb light. Other sources of beta carotene include butternut squash, spinach, and collards green, while vitamin A can be found in liver, milk, and eggs.
- Meat and eggs contain zinc, which can improve long-term eye health, delaying age-related sight loss and macular degeneration. Beef is very high in zinc, with chicken and pork containing the nutrient in lower quantities. Eggs provide not only zinc but also vitamins C and E as well as lutein and zeaxanthin.
- Drink a cup of green tea for your eye health. The catechins in green tea give it anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can help lower the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. Red wine, chocolate, berries, and apples are also high in catechins.
- Water is good for every system in your body, including your eyes. Staying well-hydrated is crucial for keeping eyes healthy and moist.
Keeping your eyes healthy by eating well is important, but perhaps even more important to the health of your eyes is having regular eye exams. If you’re looking for an ophthalmologist or optometrist in Derry, Londonderry or Windham, Spindel Eye Associates is here for you. Celebrating over thirty years in eye care, we proudly provide our patients with personalized eye care, using top of the line technology. For more information or to schedule an appointment call 603.421.6536 or contact us through our website.
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