According to the World Health Organization (WHO), at least 2.2 billion individuals around the world suffer from different types of eye problems. These problems include but are not limited to; short-sightedness, farsightedness, cataract, and glaucoma.
While many of them are treatable or at least manageable with many methods, food is one of the best ways to deal with them. In other words, there are several foods out there that can help cure them or, at least, alleviate their symptoms. Taking that into account, this post focuses on some of these foods, which you can easily incorporate into your diet.
Want to improve the health of your eyes and keep certain eye conditions at bay? If so, you should start consuming certain vegetables more often than usual. Experts recommend broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, kiwi, kale, red, green, or yellow pepper, and tomatoes. These are the highest vegetable sources of vitamin C, which plays a crucial role when it comes to eye health. For example, it helps prevent cataracts, which are characterized by clouding of the eye lens.
The good news is that you can order fresh vegetables and their respective recipes conveniently online by Sun Basket or Hello Fresh. It would be a wise thing for you to read this nice comparison between these meal delivery services before you choose one. That way, you’ll understand their ease of use, dietary options, meal varieties, as well as packaging and delivery methods better.
Anchovies, herring, mackerel, salmon, sardines, trout, and tuna are examples of fatty fish. These fish have oil in their gut and body tissue, which is why they are called oily fish or fatty fish.
Eating fatty fish regularly can be an excellent way to keep your eyes healthy, making sure you’re seeing your best. That’s because oily fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have several eye health benefits. For example, these fats can help reverse dry eye. This is an eye problem that is caused by many things, including spending too much time in front of your screen.
There is evidence to suggest that diets rich in omega-3 essential fatty acids, obtained from food sources or supplementation, may have ocular benefits. Omega-3 fatty acids are termed ‘essential’ as they cannot be synthesized in the body and, thus, must be obtained from the diet. The other major essential fatty acid family is the omega-6 fatty acids. A person’s dietary intake and balance of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids has been suggested to provide long-term benefits for several chronic ocular conditions, including dry eye disease (DED) and age-related macular degenerations (AMD).Zhang, A. C., Singh, S., Craig, J. P., & Downie, L. E. (2020). Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Eye Health: Opinions and Self-Reported Practice Behaviors of Optometrists in Australia and New Zealand. Nutrients, 12(4), 1179. Available from https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12041179
Pumpkin is delicious, sweet, and soft when cooked. One of the nutrients that it offers in abundance is vitamin E, which plays an important role in maintaining eye health. For your information, vitamin E may help protect eye cells from free radicals. If left unchecked, these unstable molecules have the potential of breaking down the eye tissue. Consequently, that may lead to the formation of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) or cataracts.
Seafood is a rich source of zinc compared to any other food. It includes crab, lobster, shrimp, and mussels. The good news is that it’s one of the easiest foods to find on the planet. You can even order it conveniently online, using a trustworthy meal delivery service, including any of the above. Home Chef is another viable alternative.
You may be wondering how this essential mineral benefits the eyes. Well, it helps maintain the health of the eye’s protein structure, retina and cell membranes. On top of that, it helps vitamin A travel from the liver to the retina for melanin production purposes. In case you didn’t know, melanin is a pigment that protects the eyes from ultraviolet (UV) light.
If you have a hard time seeing at night or in low light conditions, eating liver more often than you usually do can go a long way. Among other vitamins, this red meat is high in vitamin A. This essential vitamin plays an important role when it comes to vision. For example, it helps maintain a clear cornea (the outer covering of the eye). Apart from that, it forms part of rhodopsin, which is a protein in the eyes that lets us see in low light conditions.
Egg yolks are an excellent food source of two eye-healthy substances called “Lutein” and “Zeaxanthin.” These xanthophylls or carotenoid pigments can help protect eyes from harmful high-energy light waves like ultraviolet (UV) rays in sunlight.
On top of that, studies suggest that a high level of lutein and zeaxanthin in the eye tissue may help provide better vision, especially where glare is a problem, by serving as a light filter. They may also help improve vision in low light conditions, giving you another reason to eat eggs.
Nuts and Seeds
Besides fatty fish, nuts alongside seeds are another top source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are very important for the eyes. Some of the best options as far as these food sources go include walnuts, chia seeds, and flaxseed. So, how do these fatty acids benefit the eyes?
Well, some studies indicate that omega-3 fatty acids may help protect our eyes from macular degeneration. They may also help prevent dry eye syndrome. Last but not least, proper drainage of the intraocular fluid from the eye is another possible benefit of these fats to the eyes. That can help lower the risk of glaucoma, also known as “high eye pressure.”
Black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, chickpeas, green peas, lentils, roasted soy nuts, green soybeans, among others are all good sources of the B vitamins such as B6, B9, and B12.
According to several studies, these vitamins have a healthy impact on the eyes. That’s because they have characteristics that can help lower the levels of homocysteine. This is a protein in the body that may contribute to inflammation and an increased risk of developing macular degeneration (AMD). AMD is an eye disorder that has the potential to cause vision loss.
According to statistics, billions of people around the world suffer from one or another eye disorder. It’s an unfortunate fact that the majority of these disorders are actually preventable. The good news is that cataracts, dry eye syndrome, poor vision (especially in low light conditions), glaucoma, macular degeneration, etc. can all be prevented diet-wise. Thanks to foods like vegetables, fatty fish, pumpkins, seafood, liver, eggs, nuts as well as seeds. Eating these foods regularly will not only prevent these and other eye disorders, but it will also help improve your eye health.