Contributed by: Rachana Arya
“Eyes are the windows to the soul,” as the saying goes. The eyes are unquestionably one of our body’s most vital organs. They are valuable, irreplaceable, and necessary since they assist us in seeing and understanding the world around us. By peering into these “windows of the spirit,” we read, appreciate art, watch nature, and connect with loved ones.
Many of us are born with 20/20 vision, while others require corrective glasses or contact lenses to see clearly. Given that we all live in the digital age, we spend the majority of our time staring at some screen or another.
Our eyes may suffer as a result of this. Even those of us who have great vision might acquire vision difficulties over time, and disorders like age-related macular degeneration can emerge, so it only makes sense to take care of our eyes.
Healthy eating habits can help you maintain and improve your vision in the long run. The food we eat has a significant impact on our bodies and how they work. The same can be said for our eyes. Incorporating healthy eye foods can go a long way toward ensuring optimal eye health. The finest foods for improving eyesight are listed below.
As children, we were always told to eat lots of carrots to support eye health and prevent eye diseases. There is a lot of truth behind this, as carrots contain beta-carotene and Vitamin A, which are recommended for proper eye health.
Beta carotene is a provitamin “carotenoid” that is beneficial for the health of your eyes as it helps reduce the oxidative stress all this light puts on our eyes. Research has found that apart from carrots, other vegetables that have high amounts of beta-carotene that keep your vision bright include:
- Sweet potatoes
Dark, leafy green vegetables are also essential for healthy eyes. Various studies have claimed that they help reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) which is caused by excessive exposure to UV rays.
Green vegetables are packed with Lutein and Zeaxanthin, healthy antioxidants essential to your eyes. Hence incorporating leafy greens into your daily meals can be beneficial to your vision and ward off diseases. Some excellent sources of Lutein and Zeaxanthin include:
- Collard greens
- Brussel Sprouts
Omega-3 fatty acids
Another crucial component that is touted for its many health benefits, and for excellent eye health is omega-3 fatty acids. Research has shown that Omega-3 fatty acids help to protect the eyes from disorders that cause them to degenerate.
They aid in the lubrication of the meibomian glands, which are tiny glands located on the outer edge of the eyelids. This aids in the prevention and treatment of problems such as dry eyes. Some rich sources of Omega-3 fatty acids are:
- Chia seeds
- Canola oil
Herbs and spices
There are also some Ayurvedic herbs that are worth incorporating into your routine. Various studies have confirmed that the typical domestic herbs that are used in households can also nurture our eye health.
Many herbs and spices have remarkably positive effects on the genes that regulate the performance of the eyes’ essential vision cells, and such herbs if incorporated into the diet can help improve vision. Some herbs that have long been a folk remedy for the eyes are:
- Kesar or saffron
- Amla or Indian gooseberry
- Turmeric or Haldi
- Green tea
Fruits are a storehouse of nutrients. Some fruits like citrus fruits contain more nutrients than others that are beneficial for the eyes.
Citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C. Just like vitamin E, vitamin C is an antioxidant that is recommended to fight age-related eye damage, prevent inflammation and help in healing the inflammatory conditions of the eye. Vitamin C-rich citrus fruits that you should pick for your eye health include:
A specially curated diet full of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins can definitely help in achieving optimal eye health and have a lasting impact on your vision.
If you don’t obtain enough of these nutrients from your diet, talk to your doctor about eye health supplements that can help to keep visual impairment at bay. People who have visual problems or who follow a very tight diet should consult an eye doctor about the best things to eat.
Besides adding the above-mentioned foods to your diet, you must also opt for preventive diagnostic tests to identify complications (if any) and take measures to protect your overall well-being.
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