Nutrition: For Healthy Eyes and Better Eyesight, Focus on Eating the Right Foods

By Weintraub, LeeAnn | Pasadena Star-News, July 23, 2018 | Go to article overview

Nutrition: For Healthy Eyes and Better Eyesight, Focus on Eating the Right Foods


Weintraub, LeeAnn, Pasadena Star-News


Eating well is vital for the health of your body, but what about the health of your eyes?

Carrots may be notorious for improving sight and strengthening night vision, but optimal nutrition from a combination of whole foods can help play an important role in preventing cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration, while promoting overall eye health. To keep your eyes healthy as you age, be sure to include these foods to protect your vision.

Lutein from dark, leafy greens

The carotenoid Lutein, related to beta carotene and vitamin A, found in dark leafy green vegetables like broccoli, spinach and kale as well as orange bell pepper, squash and corn is known for its eye health benefits. Lutein can help prevent diseases of the eye like macular degeneration, cataracts and retinitis pigmentosa.

Naturally found as a pigment in the eye, Lutein is believed to protect the eyes from sun damage by filtering light.

Everything beta carotene

Foods that are rich in beta carotene, such as sweet potatoes, carrots and butternut squash, in addition to many other foods like collard greens, spinach, milk and eggs are converted into vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A is a nutrient that helps prevent night blindness and dry eyes.

Plus, vitamin A may slow the progression of macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss.

Flavonoids from oranges for the win

A recent Australian study that looked at over 2,000 adults over a 15-year period found that eating an orange a day reduces the risk of developing macular degeneration compared with those who never eat oranges. Eating an orange every week also offers a significant benefit.

The researchers were able to determine that certain orange flavonoids, or antioxidants, are responsible for protecting against this eye disease. At the same time other flavonoids from tea, wine and apples, for example, did not have this same effect.

Healthy fats for dry eyes

Dry eyes, which result in inflammation in the tear glands can occur when the diet is too high in omega-6 fatty acids and too low in omega-3 fatty acids. …

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