Are you making the right dietary choices to promote and protect the health of your eyes?
Eating a wide variety of nutritious foods not only improves your overall eye health, it may slow the progression and severity of a variety of eye conditions and diseases. According to the Cornea Research Foundation of America, many naturally colorful foods are good sources of vitamins and minerals necessary for healthy eyes.
Whether steamed or eaten raw in salads, dark leafy vegetables such as kale, spinach, collard greens, and Swiss chard are rich in antioxidants. They contain the natural carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, which help lower the chance of age-related macular degeneration (AMD, which creates vision blur in the centre of the retina), slow down the development of cataracts, and improve overall eye health.
Bright Berries and Fantastic Fruits
Not only are fresh berries delicious, they are an important part of a healthy diet. They contain many healthy vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to help combat various eye conditions. Citrus fruits are a natural source of vitamin C and flavonoids, which play a role in slowing AMD, cataracts, and glaucoma. Other fruits that benefit your eyes include: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, kiwifruit, grapes, avocados, mangoes, cantaloupe, and apricots.
Orange vegetables such as carrots, sweet potatoes, and orange peppers contain powerful carotenoids that help slow down the development of age-related eye conditions. Other colourful vegetables that contribute to good eye health include broccoli, red peppers, tomatoes, and green beans.
If you suffer from dry and irritated eyes, boosting your fatty fish intake may help. A diet including salmon, tuna, lake trout, sardines, herring, or mackerel may reduce inflammation and itchy, dry eyes. These fish are also high in omega-3 essential fatty acids, which may prevent or decrease the risk of AMD.
Nutritious Nuts and Super Seeds
Not a fan of eating fish? Give brown nuts a try. Peanuts, almonds, hazelnuts, butternuts, walnuts, and macadamia nuts are excellent sources of omega-3 essential fatty acids and vitamin E.
Another great food for promoting healthy eyes are flax seeds and flax seed oil. Try sprinkling the seeds over cereals or bake them into muffins. You can also drizzle flax seed oil over a leafy salad.