Eye Care and Diet: Eight Foods for Ocular Health

Foods that Are Good for the Eyes - Hudson Valley


Oct 9, 2015 @ 09:00 AM — by Richard Gordon
Tagged with: Eye Exams | Eye Care |

Smiling woman about to eat an apple Our team is not only committed to effective vision correction surgery. At our state-of-the-art eye care center, we work hard to protect your lifelong ocular health. Through routine exams, we can detect the early signs of serious eye diseases, and we can often provide treatment before you suffer permanent vision damage. Our team will also help you make lifestyle changes to improve your ocular health. A nutritious diet is an effective way to protect your eyes. Certain vitamin-rich foods can prevent ocular disorders and vision loss. The following eight items can protect your eyes and help you maintain sharp vision. To learn more about foods that are good for the eyes, contact our Hudson Valley practice today.

Colorful Fruits and Veggies

It is true that carrots are good for your eyes. They are full of beta-carotene, a type of vitamin A. This vitamin that can protect your retina, prevent dry eye, and reduce your risk for macular degeneration. However, carrots are just one of the colorful foods that can promote healthy vision. You should also eat bell peppers, pumpkin, strawberries, cantaloupe, and corn. All of these brightly hued foods are high in vitamin A.

Leafy Greens

Dark greens, including kale, spinach, and collard greens, have many important health benefits. In addition to being high in vitamins, they also contain large amounts of lutein and zeaxanthin. These antioxidants can counteract the effects of free radicals in your body. They have also been shown to absorb excess light energy in plants. Multiple studies indicate that lutein and zeaxanthin can improve night vision and reduce your risk for macular degeneration.

Apples

Apples, along with green tea, grapes, berries, soy, and dark chocolate, are high in bioflavonoids. These antioxidants can reduce inflammation in many areas of your body, including the blood vessels in your eyes. They can also help your body to expel toxic chemicals that could cause cancer. Bioflavonoids can reduce your risk for macular degeneration and cataracts.

Citrus

Vitamin C is also important for eye health. It promotes healthy connective tissues, including the small capillaries in your eyes. Vitamin C can reduce your risk for age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. In fact, according to the American Optometric Association, women who took vitamin C supplements for at least 10 years had a 64% lower chance of developing cataracts. Along with supplements, oranges and grapefruit are also excellent sources of vitamin C.

Fish

Coldwater fish like salmon and sardines are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Though “fat” is nearly a taboo word in our society, certain fats are actually essential for your health. Omega-3 fatty acids are the building blocks of fat molecules. They strengthen cellular membranes and fluidity, allowing your cells to expel waste products. A diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids can reduce your risk for macular degeneration, dry eye, and glaucoma. In addition to fish, walnuts, flaxseeds, and flaxseed oil are also high in omega-3 fatty acids. However, your body cannot absorb them as easily as the fatty acids in fish. Therefore, if you do not eat seafood, you should consider taking a fish oil supplement.

Omega-3s are also essential for infant eye development. If you are pregnant or breast feeding, it is important to include these nutrients in your diet. (Note that salmon and other fish can harm unborn babies, since they can be high in mercury. Therefore, you should find another source for omega-3 fatty acids.)

Contact Palisades Laser Eye Center

Learn more about how your diet can affect your eye health. Contact us today to schedule an exam and receive personalized guidance in caring for your eyes.