Most of the time we don’t really give much thought to our vision until something goes wrong. Given the fact we’re living in an age of “information overload,” life has become very busy. Sometimes we’re not aware something is broken or not operating properly until the warning signals start to beep and go off. In the world of eye health care that would be blurry vision, headaches and/or watery eye symptoms. Yet, much of what we see can be prevented or kept at bay with one simple step.
WATCH WHAT YOU EAT.
One powerful and simple step you can take in protecting your precious sense of sight is by taking mindful steps around your diet; watch what you eat. We don’t often connect the dots between our vision and what we had for breakfast, lunch or dinner but we should. When we bring a sense of intention to what we eat, we empower ourselves to better care for our vision long before a visit to the eye doctor is required.
So, we thought we’d give you a hand by providing you a quick “check list” of foods that are powerful health agents and high in antioxidants. This way the next time you’re out to grab a bite to eat or you’re at the grocery store shopping for your weekly meal plans, you’ll have a head start on what to include on your food list.
Fish Cold-water fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines and mackerel are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which may help protect against dry eyes, macular degeneration and even cataracts. If you don’t eat seafood, you can get a good supply of omega-3s by using fish oil supplements or taking vegetarian supplements that contain black currant seed oil or flaxseed oil.
Leafy Greens Spinach and kale, to name just a few, are packed full of lutein and zeaxanthin, important plant pigments that can help stem the development of macular degeneration and cataracts. Broccoli, peas and avocados are also good sources of this powerful antioxidant duo.
Eggs The vitamins and nutrients in eggs, including lutein and vitamin A (which may protect against night blindness and dry eyes), promote eye health and function.
Whole Grains A diet containing foods with a low glycemic index (GI) can help reduce your risk for age-related macular degeneration. Swap refined carbohydrates for quinoa, brown rice, whole oats and whole-wheat breads and pasta. The vitamin E, zinc and niacin found in whole grains also help promote overall eye health.
Citrus Fruits and Berries Oranges, grapefruits, lemons and berries are high in vitamin C, which may reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration.
Nuts Pistachios, walnuts, almonds — whichever type tickles your fancy — are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E that boost your eye health.
Legumes Kidney beans, black-eyed peas and lentils are good sources of bioflavonoids and zinc — and can help protect the retina and lower the risk for developing macular degeneration and cataracts.
Fish Oil, Flaxseed Oil and Black Currant Seed Oil These super supplements contain omega-3 fatty acids and have many eye health benefits, including helping to prevent or control dry eye syndrome as well as reduce the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts.
Sunflower Seeds Help keep your eyes healthy and disease-free by snacking on sunflowers seeds, which are excellent sources of vitamin E and zinc.
Beef In moderation, lean beef in your diet can boost your eye health. Beef contains zinc, which helps your body absorb vitamin and may play a role in reducing risk of advanced age-related macular degeneration.
This post originally appeared on My Envision Eye Care.