Eye-health and maintenance is important at any age, but few of us ever take the time to consider how the food we consume affects our eyes. The Age- Related Eye Disease Study, or AREDS, published in 2001 found a direct correlation in the food we consume and our eye-health. So-much-so in fact, that eating an eye-friendly diet may reduce risk of eye-health decline by over 25%. Luckily, the foods that are beneficial for your eyes are the same foods that are beneficial for your heart, skin, kidneys, liver…well you get the idea. Let’s dive into the top 5 foods you should be eating regularly to maintain your vision and eye health.
Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids, which are known as healthy fats. Omega-3 fatty acids assist in visual development and are beneficial for a whole host of reasons, some of them being: preventing dry eye, maintaining the health of your retina and promoting macular health. Sadly, most Americans are severely deficient in omega-3 fatty acids; however, this is easy to remedy by incorporating fish into your diet several times each week. The most omega-3-rich fish is wild-caught salmon.
Eggs have long been known as a superfood and for good reason. Egg yolks are packed with vitamins your eyes need to function their best. Vitamin A is known to help your eye’s mucous membrane, reduce risk of eye infections, assist with dry eye, reduce the risk of macular degeneration and protect the cornea. Aside of this, eggs also contain lutein, zinc and zeaxanthin, which minimize the risk of developing cataracts. Zinc and Vitamin A also assist with night vision. In fact, those that are Vitamin A deficient can develop night blindness as a result.
Our mothers have said it time and time again — carrots are good for your eyes. It’s true! Carrots contain high amounts of Vitamin A and beta carotene. Our body converts beta carotene into Vitamin A, which makes carrots major Vitamin A boosters. Another plus regarding carrots is that they’re small and portable, making them the perfect snack for when you’re on the go.
By this point you know that kale is a miracle vegetable. Kale is extremely high in vitamins and antioxidants, which is why they’re vital for eye-health. Kale contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which are not produced by our bodies. Like the foods listed above, kale is great for reducing risk of macular degeneration and development of cataracts.
Almonds are a great source of Vitamin E, one of the best vitamins for your eye-health. Vitamin E serves as a protectant against unstable molecules that may attack healthy tissue of the eye. One serving of almonds several times a week can help prevent macular degeneration as well as cataracts. Like carrots, almonds are easily portable and don’t spoil easily making them the perfect snack.
Note: Almonds are very calorie dense, so we recommend minding your intake.
These are our favorite foods to maintain eye-health. In fact, we try to keep each of these foods in rotation on the daily. Diets that are antioxidant, Vitamin A and Vitamin E rich will help maintain your eye-health and prevent major complications that can arise with aging. If you’re looking for more advice on maintaining your eyes, schedule an eye appointment with us today!