Just as there are foods that are good for your eye health, like carrots, there are also foods that can be damaging to your eyes. Read on to find out which ones might be lurking in your cupboards even now.
Because our eyes are vascular, meaning full of blood vessels, we need to eat a heart-healthy diet if we want to protect them. Because the blood vessels of the eye are so tiny, they could easily be blocked by fatty deposits of any size. For this reason, certain unhealthy foods may do a lot of damage.
Some of the following foods you might expect would be unhealthy, but others may surprise you. If they happen to be regularly included in your diet, be sure to consider eliminating them if you want to protect your eyes, and your overall health.
1. Margarine and vegetable oils
These products are not natural; they are man-made using chemicals and processing to manipulate them. In the end, they are very high in polyunsaturated fats, which are very unstable and will easily oxidize in the body. Oxidized fats may cause mutations in cells, as well as inflammation. These mutations and inflammation may lead to clogged arteries.
2. Fried foods
As mentioned above, vegetable oils are very bad for the body, and that is exactly what these foods are prepared with. Canola oil in particular is one of the three most genetically modified products in the United States and it is used by nearly all restaurants for frying food.
Not only does the oil lead to clogged arteries, but arterial plaque can lead to higher blood pressure, which is also dangerous to the eyes.
3. Commercially-prepared cookies and cakes
These products are loaded with trans fats, which are created when food manufacturers process vegetable oil. Trans fats are notorious for increasing the blood level of LDL ‘bad’ cholesterol, which can lead to arterial blockages. Trans fats also raise the levels of triglycerides in the blood, which contributes to fatty deposits in the arteries.
Most varieties of these also come loaded up with trans fats that are just waiting to clog your arteries. Imagine the build-up of pressure within the delicate eye if the intricate blood vessels there get clogged. When the flow of blood in the eye is blocked, it cuts off the supply of nutrients and oxygen as well. This can lead to an eye stroke, and decreased or distorted vision.
5. Sweetened drinks
Sweetened drinks get their sweet flavor from added sugar sources like high-fructose corn syrup. These added sugars have been scientifically proven to increase the risks for high blood pressure and elevated triglyceride levels. All of this spells trouble for your cardiovascular system and your eyes.
For eye health, and overall health, avoid the processed foods and drinks, and stick to real food and fresh water and teas. To give your eyes an extra oomph, seek out foods high in vitamin A and carotenoid antioxidants, such as sweet potatoes and spinach… and those carrots, too!
-The Alternative Daily