By Denise Drew on Jul 20, 2020 @ 10:00 AM
Your eyes allow you to enjoy the beauty of the world around you and are essential for day to day living. They make it easy for you to walk, drive, exercise and see the faces of families and friends. Losing your vision and becoming dependent on others to assist you can be devastating. However this is a reality for many who are diagnosed with glaucoma. It is a disease of the eye in which increased pressure causes damage to the lens structure of the eye. Some symptoms of glaucoma include blurred vision, nausea and seeing halos. However, the effects of this disease can be lowered with medication. But have you ever heard the saying that prevention is better than a cure?
Studies show that eating foods rich in retinol (Vitamin A), beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin may help reduce the risk or help prevent glaucoma and maintain healthy eyesight for people at higher risk.
Retinol (Vitamin A)
Research shows that when people eat foods rich in retinol (vitamin A), they are less likely to get age-related eye diseases such as cataracts and macular degeneration. Some foods rich in this vitamin are:
- Fish-liver oil
- Oily fish (salmon and tuna)
- Dairy products (milk, yogurt and hard cheeses)
As kids, our parents or guardians told us to eat our carrots for better eyesight -- and they were right. Studies support that fruits and vegetables high in beta-carotene (like carrots) have a protective effect on the eye. Other sources are:
- Sweet potato
Lutein and Zeaxanthin
Dark green and leafy vegetables with high levels of lutein and zeaxanthin are suggested for the prevention of eye diseases. Foods rich in these eye vitamins are:
- Collard greens
Adding these foods into your diet has never been easier. You can enjoy a refreshing, green smoothie by adding green, leafy veggies like spinach and kale in a blender with berries. You can also include these foods in a garden salad, fruit salad, soup and so much more. The reward? A healthy and tasty way to nourish your body and improve your vision.
While heredity and other risk factors such as age, race, and lifestyle may determine if a person gets glaucoma, studies show that the foods discussed here can prevent the onset of the disease. And beyond the research, words of wisdom that apply across our daily lives is “prevention is better than a cure”.