Nutrition For Healthy Eyes And Tips To Maintain Them

Nutrition For Healthy Eyes And Tips To Maintain Them

Nutrition plays an important role in maintaining the proper health of the eyes. There have been studies concluding the same. Read this blog to know more about the connection between important nutrients and healthy eyes. 

How nutrition ensures healthy eyes?

According to the research published in 2001, The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS), there are some key nutrients including zinc, vitamin C, vitamin E, copper and beta carotene which are essential to lower the risk of poor eye health, especially caused due to age. This research study is considered as a landmark project. The findings suggest that the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) can be lowered with nutritional supplements such as vitamin or mineral can reduce the progression of AMD by 25 percent. 

Cataracts are one of the major causes of blindness around the globe. The clouding of lens occurs due to the accumulation of proteins in the lens. In addition to the above research study, there are research papers that the antioxidant characteristics of vitamin E and C can slow down the progression of cataracts. For instance, the Roche European American Cataract Trial explains that regular consumption of antioxidant supplement with vitamins C and E and beta-carotene resulted in the worsening of the cataract progression. 

Experts from the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) explain that not fulfilling the requisite amount of nutrients through fruits, vegetables and whole grains is one of the primary reasons for eye disorders. The arteries inside the eyes may not be able to provide sufficient nutrition to the eye for functioning, thereby increasing the possibility of the following eye problems-

  • Dry eye syndrome 
  • Cataracts 
  • Diabetic retinopathy 
  • Glaucoma 
  • Macular degeneration 

Important nutrients for the eyes

The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends the following nutrients to be taken to ensure that the eyes remain healthy. 

Nutrient Food Sources  Function  Eye problem caused due to deficiency
Vitamin A Liver, meat, fish, dairy products, egg yolks, sweet potatoes, apricots, carrots   The beta-carotene and carotenoids in Vitamin A is essential to maintain the light-sensing cells of the eyes. Night blindness, dry eyes 
Lutein  Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, romaine lettuce, turnip greens, broccoli, peas, collards, red grapes, pistachios, green peas, kale, parsley, sweet corn  Acts as a blocker for harmful ultraviolet rays, protects the central part of the retina, protects the eyes against blue light  Age-related macular degeneration
Zeaxanthin  Green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, romaine lettuce, turnip greens, broccoli, peas, collards Acts as a blocker for harmful ultraviolet rays, protects the central part of the retina, protects the eyes against blue light  Age-related macular degeneration
Omega-3 fatty acids  Coldwater fish including salmon, tuna, sardines, trout and halibut DHA compounds in omega-3 fatty acids for eye and brain development during childhood Age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, dry eyes 
Vitamin C  Citrus fruits such as tangerines, grapefruit, lemons, oranges, peaches, tomatoes, red bell peppers, strawberries, guavas Maintains the concentration of aqueous humor of the eye, protects the eye  Age-related macular degeneration 
Vitamin E Avocados, almonds, sunflower seeds The antioxidants in vitamin E sources prevent oxidation inside the eye Retinal thinning, cataracts, blurred vision, anemia 
Zinc  Legumes such as kidney beans, lima beans, black-eyed peas, oysters, lean red meat, fortified cereals Superoxide dismutase, an enzyme in zins prevent oxidation inside the eye Night blindness, lower production of visual pigments 
Gamma- Linolenic Acid  Blackcurrant, organ meats, borage, primrose oil, starflower oil  The anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce the risk of infection and inflammation Age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy

Top 8 food habits to follow for healthy eyes

Nutritionists suggest that if you take the following  8 foods on a daily basis, the requisite amount of nutrients gets fulfilled. 

  1. Oily fish such as mackerel, herring, anchovies, tuna, salmon, trout, etc. are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
  2. Nuts such as cashews, peanuts, lentils, walnuts, etc. as these contain high levels of vitamin E.
  3. Chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds are rich sources of omega-3.
  4. Green leafy vegetables including spinach, kale, collards, etc. as these contain high levels of lutein, zeaxanthin and vitamin C.
  5. To restrict age-related eye damage, take citrus fruits such as lemons, grapefruits, oranges, etc.
  6. Sweet potatoes or carrots as salads as these are rich sources of beta carotene and vitamin E.
  7. Eggs contain essential nutrients such as vitamins E, C, zinc, lutein and zeaxanthin.
  8. Drink sufficient amounts of water to prevent dehydration that can eventually cause dry eye syndrome. 

How to ensure healthy eyes? 

In addition to consuming the above-mentioned nutrients through various food sources, consider the following lifestyle factors that can reduce the risk of any eye problem considerably. 

  • Wash the hands before putting the contact lens.
  • Quit smoking immediately to prevent the smoke from irritating the eyes.
  • Wear sunglasses when stepping outside to lower the risk of cataracts.
  • If you are into working with chemicals, protect the eyes with eye shield. 
  • Follow the 20/20 rule while on the computer. According to this rule, look away from the screen every 20 mins,for 20 seconds. 
  • Go for regular eye check ups without fail, especially if you are over 35 years old.

Conclusion 

Even after taking proper precautions and consuming a nutritious meal, patients can develop several eye disorders. This is primarily because of genetic disorders. The most common eye problems are- cataracts and glaucoma. Fortunately, both of these problems are preventable in nature. Furthermore, experts recommend that after 40, people should go for regular checkups to check the signs of cataracts or any other problems. Consult with anyone of the eye surgeons from Pristyn Care. To cure the problem of cataracts permanently, our doctors rely only on the most advanced technique for cataract surgery. Get in touch with our team of eye doctors by booking an appointment today.