Nutrition and Your Eyes: Foods to Boost Your Eye Health

Our eyes are the windows through which we see the world. We only have two of them, so if we don’t take care of them, who will?

One way by which we can take care of our eyes is by feeding on foods that can boost our eye health, especially as we age. Below are ten food groups that can do that:

1. Egg Yolk

One raw organic pastured egg yolk contains about 0.25mg each of luthein and zeaxanthin which are antioxidants, in a highly absorbable and nearly ideal form. These antioxidants lower the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts.

2. Bell peppers, Tomatoes, Cantaloupe, Corn and Pumpkin

Apart from carrots, these other colorful fruits and vegetables really boost the eye health as they are great sources for vitamins A and C. The lack of these vitamins in your system can cause serious health issues which can affect your eyes as well. Carotenoids are the compounds that give these fruits their color, and they are thought to reduce the risk of many eye diseases.

3. Salmon, Sardines, Mackerel and Tuna

These are coldwater fish and they contain a high amount of Omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to help in healthy tear production and prevention of macular degeneration, Dry Eye Syndrome and cataracts. They do this by promoting healthy blood vessel growth and circulation in the eyes.

4. Sunflower Seeds and Wheat Germ

Sunflower seeds contain high levels of vitamin E and zinc which promote overall eye health. Snacking on them can be very beneficial to our eyes as they help in the production of red blood cells, thereby reducing your risk of cardiovascular diseases, which in turn helps to maintain good eyesight.

5. Nuts

Almonds, walnuts, pistachios and any other nut you can think of! They’re all very good for our eyes as they are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins, which can help to produce new cells and significantly improve our eye health. A handful of these nuts provides about half the required daily dose of vitamin E.

6. Spinach, Romaine Lettuce, Mustard Greens and Kale

These green leafy vegetables are packed with luthein and zeaxanthin that act as antioxidants, which help to keep your eye cells healthy and also keep the lens in your eyes clear. They lower the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts. Other greens that can help too are turnip greens and collard greens.

7. Whole Grains

In order to boost our eye health, we should swap refined carbohydrates for brown rice, whole oats, and whole wheat bread and pasta. These wholegrain meals have a low glycemic index (GI) and can help reduce the risk for age- related macular degeneration. They also contain vitamin E, zinc and niacin.

8. Fish oil, Flaxseed oil and Black currant seed oil

These are great supplements that contain omega-3 fatty acids. Taking them will help to prevent or control Dry Eye Syndrome. They also help to reduce the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. A word of advice here: Consult your GP before you take any vitamin or mineral supplements.

9. Black peas, Kidney beans and Lentils

These are good sources of bioflavonoids and zinc, which can help protect the retina and lower the risk for developing macular degeneration and cataracts. Other legumes too like kidney beans and lentils can also serve the same purpose.

10. Oranges, Lemons, Grapefruits and Strawberries

They are packed full with vitamin C, which has been shown to reduce the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts.  Also, taking a daily multivitamin helps make up for not taking them as required from foods. Again, your doctor’s advice is needed here.

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