We all know that if we intend to keep our bodies in good shape we need to do some form of physical exercise regularly as well as be careful with what we eat. If we only would eat junk food our bodies, and our health, would seriously suffer. What we tend to forget is, that this goes for our eyes as well. If we only eat junk food, we would not be doing much for the well-being of our eyes. Age-related eye diseases such as macular degeneration (vision loss) and cataracts commonly cause impaired vision and blindness in older adults. But lifestyle changes, including a healthy diet, can help in delaying or preventing certain eye problems. Uncontrolled diabetes increases a person’s risk for cataracts and and may cause diabetic retinopathy.
Lots of researches have concluded that vitamin A, C, E plus zinc can slow down the development of age-related changes in eyes. Vitamins C and E may also help to inhibit the development or progression of cataracts. Vitamin A can be found in vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, sweet potatoes, and spinach. Good sources of vitamin C are citrus fruits (oranges, lemon, mausmi), and various berries like amla. Two chemical compounds called Lutein and zeaxanthin also are instrumental in preventing eye damage because of aging and overexposure to the sun’s radiation. They can also act like natural sunglasses, physically helping to filter out harmful rays and stopping it from reaching and damaging eyes.
Lutein and zeaxanthin are often found together in many fruits and vegetables. They include spinach, kiwi, sweet corn, mango, broccoli, green beans, prunes, capsicum (orange), peas, melon, grapes, oranges, papaya, peaches, lettuce, and pumpkin. For maximum benefit, eating these foods mentioned above lightly cooked is better than eating them raw, as cooking makes it easier for body to absorb them. Overcooking, however, can remove goodness of vegetables. There is currently no officially recommended daily dose of lutein and zeaxanthin, but it is thought that we should eat about 6mg each day – around two to four servings of fruit and vegetables mentioned above.
A diet high in saturated fat and sugar may increase the risk of eye disease. Cardiovascular disease, diabetes and eye conditions including cataracts and age-related macular degeneration have been shown to occur less frequently in people who eat diets rich in vitamins, minerals, healthy proteins, omega-3 fatty acids and lutein.