Food, we all need to eat and increasingly Albertans are integrating healthy eating into ensuring a healthy lifestyle. While carrots may be the food best known for helping your eyes, other foods and their nutrients may be just as important for keeping your eyesight keen as you age. Here are some powerhouse foods for healthy eyes to try.
Bright orange fruits and vegetables get their colour from beta carotene, a precursor of vitamin A that helps promote healthy vision. Winter squash, kale, apricots, and red pepper are top sources.
Leafy greens are packed with lutein and zeaxanthin – antioxidants that studies show lower the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts as well as providing protection against eye damage from things like sunlight, cigarette smoke, and air pollution. Kale, collard greens, broccoli, spinach, bright-colored fruits like kiwis and grapes are good sources. Egg yolk is a prime source of lutein and zeaxanthin plus zinc, which also helps reduce your macular degeneration risk.
Vitamin C is a top antioxidant. Papaya, oranges, green peppers, grapefruit, strawberries, and brussel sprouts are among the top sources of vitamin C.
Vitamins C and E work together to keep healthy tissue strong. Wheat Germ, almonds, sunflower seeds, and hazelnuts are also good sources of vitamin E. Wheat germ is an easy addition when you’re baking, it can also be sprinkled on oatmeal, yogurt, salads, and mixed with smoothies.
From chickpeas and kidney beans, to mung beans and lentils, eating beans and other legumes is an easy way to add zinc to your diet. Zinc helps release vitamin A from the liver so that it can be used in eye tissues, while a zinc deficiency can cause deterioration of the macula, at the centre of the retina. Zinc can also be found in beef, poultry, oysters, crab, eggs, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, and whole grains.
Tuna, salmon, mackerel, anchovies and trout are rich in DHA, a fatty acid found in your retina where low levels have been linked to dry eye syndrome. Aim for at least two servings of cold-water fish a week. Salmon, sardines, and herring have the most omega-3s, but flounder, halibut, and tuna are also good sources.
If you have or are at risk for age-related macular degeneration (AMD) there are vitamin supplements that may help slow it or keep it from getting worse. If you’re in your 60s and have a family history of AMD, ask your eye doctor about taking other supplements.
For further assistance, contact our caring staff and expert optometrists to answer all of your questions to provide you the clear vision you deserve. To book your appointment call Londonderry Eye Care today at 780–476-7631 or online at www.leyecare.com/book-eye-exam/.