Eat for Your Eyes
Much of the damage that leads to eye conditions can be linked to free-radicals, so it is prudent to maintain a diet rich in foods that are high in nutrients which nourish the eyes: antioxidant vitamins and minerals; the carotenes lutein, zeaxanthin, and lycopene; and healthy fats. The following foods are great choices for eye health.
Antioxidant-rich blueberries contain flavonoids known as anthocyanidins, the antioxidant compounds responsible for their bright blue colour. Studies show that blueberry extract helps improve night vision and may protect against the development of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), glaucoma, and cataracts.
Broccoli has high amounts of antioxidant vitamins C and E. It’s also rich in lutein, a carotenoid that concentrates in the retina, protecting it from damage and helping to prevent AMD. Broccoli and other members of the cabbage family, such as kale, Brussels sprouts, and collards, are all good sources of beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
It’s not a myth, carrots really are good for your eyes. The beta-carotene in carrots provides protection against AMD (age-related macular degeneration) and the development of cataracts. Carrots also support good night vision. Their antioxidant compounds are good for the eyes and also encourage heart health.
Studies show that capsicums may help protect against cataracts, possibly due to their high vitamin C and beta-carotene content.
Spinach is one of the richest dietary sources of lutein, making it important for supporting healthy eyesight and preventing AMD and cataracts.
Oily fish such as salmon and tuna are rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids (EFAs), which are helpful in fighting free-radical damage. Retinal photoreceptors (the cells that allow vision to occur) break down in the presence of light, and EFAs protect against the free radicals produced by light. Studies show that adding omega-3s to the diet helps to support healthy vision. (If eating fish is not your choice, try ‘Lifestream’ Omega3 from Algae) Cold-Water Fish