You might not give it much thought on a day-to-day basis, but your vision is an incredibly important aspect of your overall health and wellness. Without it, you’ll miss out on the beauty of a summer sunset, the vibrant colors and glossy frosting of your birthday cake, the heartwarming smiles of your children. As people grow older, their vision starts to change, and they’re more apt to develop eye-related health conditions such as cataracts, dry eye, or macular degeneration. Keep your eyes – and your ability to see the world you live in – as strong and healthy as possible by choosing these vision-boosting foods.
You have undoubtedly heard the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids being touted by your doc, your friends, and countless magazine articles. If you’re not already incorporating them into your daily diet for other health reasons, start eating them for your eyes
One of the very best sources of omega-3 fatty acids are oily fish. These include salmon, trout, tuna, mackerel, sardines, and herring. Make a delicious dinner with whole grilled trout or a tender filet of poached salmon. It’s also a great idea to keep canned fish in your cupboard – not just tuna, but the smaller ones such as sardines and anchovies. They can be used to add a salty punch to everything from Caesar salad dressing and homemade pasta sauce to a pizza or charcuterie board.
In addition, there’s evidence that eating fish rich in omega-3s can counteract dry eye, whether it’s as a result of aging or simply from spending too much time staring at your computer.
2. Nuts and Seeds
Boost your baby blues by adding plenty of nuts and healthful seeds to your diet, too. They’re also abundant in omega-3 and offer plenty of Vitamin E, which is essential for eye health.
Snack on walnuts, cashews, peanuts, and almonds out of hand, or toss a handful into a salad or yogurt parfait. It’s easy to use chia seeds and hemp seeds too, especially if you make smoothies. Or try substituting a tablespoon of ground flax mixed with an equal amount of water in any baked good recipe that calls for an egg.
3. Leafy Greens
You knew this one was coming, right? Leafy greens are the darlings of chefs and nutrition experts around the globe, and for good reason: they are extraordinarily good for you. They provide antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin, both of which are crucial for your vision. Vitamin C, which is also great for eye health, is abundant in greens.
In general, the darker the green, the more nutrient-rich it is. Kale, spinach, collards, mustard greens, and swiss chard are all fantastic choices. Add raw baby spinach or kale to a creamy fruit smoothie – it isn’t detectable at all! Swiss chard makes a fine addition to minestrone or chicken-noodle soup, too.
The eye’s retina, and the vascular tissue that surrounds it, both contain high levels of zinc. So, it makes sense that zinc-rich foods are fantastic if you want to stave off age-related vision loss and macular degeneration.
“Unfortunately, macular degeneration currently has no cure,” say the ophthalmologists at Clarity Vision. “However, you can slow its progression, and diet is one of the most effective methods of doing so.”
When it comes to getting enough zinc from your diet, being a carnivore comes in handy. Beef is the best sources of this mineral, but chicken breast, pork loin, and seafood are runners-up.
If you’re not a meat eater, don’t sweat it. Vegetarians and vegans can get good amounts of zinc from potatoes, lentils and other legumes, and even dark chocolate!
5. Orange Veggies
Turns out Bugs Bunny was right: carrots are ideal to munch on if you want good vision and healthy eyes. That’s due largely to the beta carotene, which the body uses to produce Vitamin A. Vitamin A, in turn, plays an important role in helping the retina to absorb light.
Similarly, sweet potatoes also owe their deep orange hue to beta carotene. These tasty tubers are rich in Vitamin E, as well. Not a fan of that overly sweet, gooey, marshmallow-topped casserole that Aunt Denise brings to every Thanksgiving? Try a savory preparation instead. Stir a spoonful of chipotles in adobo into cooked, mashed sweet potatoes and serve alongside black beans and brown rice for a powerhouse Tex-Mex bowl.
There aren’t many foods that are as versatile and nutritious as hen fruit. Eggs tick all the boxes when it comes to eye health, too, since they offer lutein, zeaxanthin, zinc, and Vitamins C and E.
It’s easy to scramble or fry a couple of eggs for breakfast, pack an egg-salad sandwich for lunch, or clean out your crisper and make a veggie-packed frittata that will taste good hot, room temperature, or cold.
7. Eating Right for Eye Health Is Easy
While almost all of these nutrients, minerals, and vitamins are available in supplement form, it’s always better to get them directly from the foods you eat. Not only are they more bioavailable in that form, but a diet rich in antioxidants and other good-for-you nutrients is beneficial across the board.
Many people around the world are using lockdown time productively by cooking more meals from scratch. We hope that this article has inspired you to draw up your next grocery list with an eye to ocular health!
Article Submitted By Community Writer