Good eyesight is something that many of us take for granted, but taking steps to protect healthy vision can be crucial for preventing age-related eye problems. Diminished eyesight doesn’t have to be an inevitable part of growing older.
While glaucoma, macular degeneration and other eye diseases are common for older men and women, following these tips can help you sharpen your eyesight and allow you to see well throughout your life.
Eating right for good eye health
Just like the rest of your organs, a nutritious diet is important for good eye health, as our eyes need many nutrients in order to function properly. Consuming bright orange and yellow vegetables as well as dark leafy greens can help prevent age-related macular degeneration, which is a leading cause of blindness.
Foods that are especially beneficial include:
- Sweet potatoes
- Yellow peppers
- Egg yolks
- All dark, leafy greens
By eating foods that are good sources of cysteine, lecithin and sulfur, you can help prevent cataract formation. Some of the best choices include:
To boost eye health and even improve vision, eat:
- Blueberries, grapes and goji berries
- Foods that are rich in DHA fatty acids like wild-caught salmon, mackerel and cod
Sunscreen for your eyes
Many people lather on the sunscreen to protect their skin from burning, but forget that their eyes also need protection. Wearing sunglasses helps to block harmful UV rays that can contribute to developing macular degeneration.
The lighter skin you have, the more cautious you should be. Choose sunglasses with 100 percent UV protection and wear a wide-brimmed hat to block damaging rays.
Eyestrain is common with many of us spending so much time in front of a computer screen. It’s important to give your eyes an occasional rest when doing any type of concentrated activity.
For 5-10 minutes every hour, look away from your work or close your eyes; you might also use this time to just walk around, giving your entire body a needed break which will enhance energy when you return.
Be sure to blink regularly, which will relieve the strain of continuous focus. Rolling your eyes is a good exercise for eye health; look up and then slowly circle 10 times clockwise and 10 times counterclockwise.
Smoking is linked to many diseases and chronic illnesses, including serious eye conditions. If you smoke, stop as soon as possible and stay away from tobacco smoke, as well as other forms of pollution such as exhaust fumes.
Toxic cigarette smoke is linked to many serious eye conditions. It’s been shown to increase the risk of developing optic nerve damage as well as age-related macular degeneration, which can lead to blindness.
Do everything possible to stay away from tobacco smoke, exhaust fumes, and other kinds of polluted air. For those who stop smoking, the risk for eye disease becomes almost as low as for people who never smoked at all.
Trans fats, which are found in many processed foods, are also thought to interfere with the omega-3 fats in the body, which are essential for good eye health. Trans fats have also been linked to macular degeneration. This is just one more reason to avoid foods that contain them such as margarine, shortening, fried foods, cookies and crackers.
Don’t take your eyesight for granted – treating your eyes right now will help save your vision so that you can enjoy it throughout your life.
-The Alternative Daily