What goes into your body decides how healthy you are. A good diet can do wonders when it comes to improving eye health. You just need to know your dos and don’ts. It took me a while, but I made my way through it as well.

All my life, I wished to own glasses that had windshield wipers for rainy days. Had I known about these effective remedies for improving eye health early on, I would have definitely given them a shot then. It doesn’t happen overnight of course, but it’s worth a try. Here are some ways of avoiding the hassle of blurred vision and eye disorders that have helped over the years:

Tea

The study of US adults found that people who drank hot tea everyday were 74% less likely to have glaucoma, as opposed to those who weren’t too fond of tea.

Like every part of our body, our eyes also need nutrients to stay healthy and strong. Green tea, which is rich in antioxidants, is not only good for your skin, heart and digestive system but also your eyes. Drinking green tea can reduce the effects of oxidative stress, imbalance of which can cause diseases like macular degeneration, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy, eventually leading to blindness. Drinking teas rich in antioxidants can help combat this problem.

Another popular tea amongst the list is white tea since it’s also rich in antioxidants that benefit the eyes. Green tea and white tea come from the same plant – the only difference is that white tea is picked earlier and processed in a way that allows it to keep all the anti-oxidants. This tea is great for eye diseases like glaucoma since it contains three times as many antioxidants as green tea

Lastly, oolong tea comes from the same plant as the above two but is partially fermented. It contains antioxidants including catechins, thearubigin and theaflavin. These antioxidants help in avoiding the harmful effects of free radicals.

Kale

To all you salad lovers, this might sound like a treat. Kale is extremely rich in two beta-carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, which are the only carotenoids found in the lens of the eye, and so aid in preventing cataracts, macular degeneration and other eye disorders.

These two antioxidants can defuse potentially damaging free radicals and act as a sunscreen for your eyes as they absorb 40-90% of blue light intensity. Fascinating, isn’t it?

So, eating foods like kale, oranges, other leafy greens like spinach, turnip greens, broccoli, and eggs also provide you with these nutrients, that help in making our eyes healthy.

Fruits

This “vision fruit” – Blueberry – has been in most people’s top 10 grocery items, not only because of its amazing taste but also because it has been known to improve night vision since the 1940s.

Blueberries are also a great source of antioxidants, which can help protect and refill the macular pigment in your eye. They also contain a substance called anthocyanin, which neutralises inflammation and oxidative stress in the eyes.

If you are not a big fan of blueberries, then we’ve got you covered. Switch to red grapes or dark cherries since they are rich in anthocyanin as well.

Moreover, pink and red grapefruits, which are rich in vitamin C and carotenes, have also proven to protect your eye health. They reduce the risk of developing macular degeneration. Other superb sources of vitamin-C are strawberries, bell peppers, guava, and oranges. SO many options, I’m getting overwhelmed!

Fish oil

A common, and in most cases dangerous, eye condition is that of having dry eyes. I know for a fact that most of us would rub or itch our eyes as the first instinct for relief. However, as tempting as it sounds, STOP! Rubbing dry eyes could lead to serious infections.

Omega-3 fatty acids in fish oil keep the eyes lubricated, by improving the health of cell membranes in the eyes. This moisture is provided by a compound that makes up omega-3 — docosahexaenoic acid (or DHA) – which prevents macular degeneration and cataract

Nuts and seeds

Foods that are rich in Vitamin-E and Zinc – almonds, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts and peanuts – go a great mile for protecting your eyes. These nutrients not only benefit the entire body but are work excessively well in terms of significantly lowering the risk of cataracts, and protecting your vision in general.

Fish

Shellfish like crab, oysters and lobster are all rich in the mineral zinc. Zinc is most widely found in the tissues of the retina. However, for those of you who have macular degeneration, your levels of zinc in the retina can be very low. Therefore, eating foods that are rich in zinc can be of great help in order to prevent eye disorders.

Salmon, on the other hand, is rich in vitamin-B and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which are beneficial for the eyes as they prevent cataracts and macular degeneration. Apart from salmon, other fatty fish like sardines, mackerel and trout also serve the same purpose, so incorporating these in your diet can really make a difference.

Imagine waking up in the morning with a blurry vision, forgetting where you left your glasses, and having a mini heart attack trying to look for them all over the room. Is it really worth the panic? If you feel it’s not, then definitely try these foods for healthier eyes. Other basic steps that you could include in your daily life are wearing sunglasses or hats outdoors, maintaining a good diet and weight, avoiding smoke, and distressing. Let us know how these work out for you.

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Eye Health
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