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It has been proven that certain kinds of food can indeed improve your eyesight, reverse symptoms of optical aging, and maintain the health of the eyes. Before we go into the details, it would be a good idea to discuss some of the common eye problems.

Common Vision Problems

Think of the eye as a camera. Like a camera, the eyes also have lenses. At the center of the lens is an opening through which light enters the eye. The eyes’ inner surface is covered by a light sensitive layer called retina. At the center of the retina lies the macula, which is responsible for detailed vision.

In some people, the cells at the site of the macula may become damaged and the eye’s ability to focus diminishes. This condition is called macular degeneration. While it may not lead to blindness, your vision may be severely affected.

Myopia and Hyperopia are other eye conditions. These conditions can be corrected with prescription glasses.

The Role of Free Radicals and Anti-Oxidants

The conditions mentioned above can be aggravated by free radicals. Some foods are said to release a lot of free radicals. They are also created in the body after exposure to the sun, from cigarette smoke and even from the atmosphere. You can prevent damage from free radicals to a large extent by eating foods rich in anti-oxidants, such as carrots, potatoes, green leafy vegetables, wine, and more.

Make Leafy Vegetables a Part of Your Diet

A recent study conducted at the Florida International University found that a nutrient called lutein can protect the eyes against many eye conditions. For instance, the study found that it can minimize the incidence of macular degeneration by up to 80%. Unfortunately, the body does not produce lutein naturally and you have to get it from your food.

Leafy vegetables like broccoli, kale, and spinach are rich in lutein. A recent report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition recently mentioned that even if you eat just a teaspoon of a leafy vegetable and a little fat everyday, you can raise the level of lutein in your blood by nearly 90%. Just 10 mg of lutein supplements every day for three months will increase the quantity of macular pigment in your eyes significantly.

But you will need to eat leafy vegetables for at least a few months, before you will notice any effect. If you get tired of eating leafy vegetables, you can supplement your diet with some multivitamin pills.

Eating the Right Food for your Eyes

Start Eating Carrots

You may have heard your parents asking you to eat carrots, saying they are good for your eyes. There seems to be some truth in that old wives’ tale after all. Carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli, and pumpkin are rich sources of beta-carotene, which is converted into Vitamin A in the liver. If you are deficient in Vitamin A, you may have difficulty seeing in the dark. This condition can lead to night blindness. So if your vision in the dark has reduced, there is a big chance that you are suffering from Vitamin A deficiency. Here is how it happens.

When the body is not able to get Vitamin A for a long time, the photoreceptors in the eye’s outer segments deteriorate. When this happens, some chemical processes that are important to vision no longer take place. When you start taking Vitamin A again, the process comes back to normal. But here’s the thing. You cannot improve your eyesight with beta-carotene unless you are already deficient in Vitamin A. This means that your body converts only as much of beta-carotene into Vitamin A as it needs. The good thing about it is that there is no risk of suffering from Vitamin A toxicity, which can happen if you take too much of another kind of Vitamin A called retinoids.

The Silent Killer Called Diabetes and Its Effects on Eyes

Avoid processed meats, food and drink containing a lot of sugar, and fried foods. These foods can lead to diabetes, which is another cause of vision loss. If you have diabetes, there is a higher chance that you will develop cataracts when you are younger. Your chances of developing glaucoma also increase twice so make sure to have a yearly eye exam. Another vision problem caused by diabetes is diabetic retinopathy. This occurs when the blood vessels that supply blood to the retina are damaged. The best way to prevent diabetes is to maintain proper weight, which you attain by eating a balanced diet.

The Importance of a Balanced Diet for Good Vision

The importance of a balanced diet cannot be stressed enough when it comes to maintaining good eyesight. Make sure that your diet contains the recommended amount of essential vitamins and nutrients. Apart from this, you can also maintain your eyesight by wearing protective eyewear.

Protective Eyewear


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