We have all heard over the years about having a healthy lifestyle. Mom and dad drilled it into us to eat our vegetables even when we turned up our noses. There was no leaving the table until we had cleaned our plates.
Then as we grew up we learned about certain healthy habits, like regular exercise, avoiding smoking, drinking in moderation, and staying hydrated, we were told this would keep us healthy and avoid physical issues as we grew older. Just as these are all good ways to maintain our mental and physical health, there are certain habits which help our eyes stay healthy. Certain foods contain nutrients for healthy eyes. Interested to learn more? Check out our guide below.
How Certain Foods Promote Healthy Eyes
There are eye healthy nutrients contained in certain foods which can help prevent, slow down, and even suppress some serious eye diseases. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and including these nutrients in your daily diet can aid with eye diseases like age related macular degeneration (AMD), the formation of cataracts, dry eye symptoms, and eyelid disorders like blepharitis. Some of the eye healthy foods you should be incorporating into your diet include:
- Lutein is a nutrient for your eyes found in certain fruits and vegetables and egg yolks
- Zeaxanthin is a second important nutrient for healthy eyes.
- Omega 3 fatty acids
- Vitamin D, A, and E
So what are some of the best foods containing the above nutrients for our overall eye health and ocular comfort?
Let’s start with cold water fish. Certain kinds of fish are high in Omega 3 fatty acids (DHA and EPA). They include wild salmon, mackerel, rainbow trout, tuna, and sardines. It is recommended that you should include 3-4 servings per week into your diet. These cold water fish discourage inflammations and also help dry eye symptoms.
Leafy Green Vegetables
Oh, yeah, remember those were some of the veggies mom was determined you would eat. Dark leafy lettuces like romaine, green leaf, and arugula are especially full of Vitamin A and C. Vegetables like spinach, kale, collard greens, chard, cabbage, green peas, and broccoli contain significant amounts of Lutein and Zeaxanthin. All these leafy greens benefit your eyes in multiple ways and lower the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts according to recent studies.
Colorful Fruits and Berries
Blackberries, strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries are all loaded with Vitamin C which reduces your chances of developing both macular degeneration and cataracts. Include grapefruit, papaya, oranges, bananas, and tomatoes in here too. This is a sweet and delicious way to keep your eyes healthy. Sprinkle berries over cereal, serve them with cheeses as an appetizer, or bake them into desserts and pies. Satisfy your sweet tooth and help your vision too
Many nuts contain Vitamin E especially almonds, walnuts, cashews, pumpkin seeds, and flax seeds. One handful of almonds per day gives you about half your daily requirement in Vitamin E which is helpful to slow down macular degeneration. Keep them on hand for a filling and healthy snack, instead of reaching for the chips or some other not so healthy snack.
Yes, we said eggs. Although eating eggs has been discouraged over the last decade, new studies are showing more health benefits than problems. In fact the yolk of the egg is filled with zinc, Lutein and Zeaxanthin. These all help reduce the risks of macular degeneration.
Not a Kind of Food, but a Color- Orange
Find something orange and you probably have an eye healthy food. How many can you think of? There are carrots of course, and oranges, but what about orange bell peppers. Stuff them, put them in salads, sauté them with onions and other veggies, for a great side dish. Add them into an omelet with spinach for a healthy breakfast. Loaded with Vitamin A or Beta-Carotene you have a colorful salad or side dish while you are keeping your peepers healthy.
Start adding these foods into your own family diet plan and begin to teach your own children about how to stay healthy in general and prevent future chronic eye issues. Not only will you help maintain your own eye health, but you will also be teaching the future generation how to keep their vision at its best.
As a bonus, mom will be so proud of you!
If you have any questions about your own eye health, contact the eye care specialists at Buda Vision Source.