You’ve likely been told at one time or another that if you want healthy eyes, you need to eat carrots. And while the old adage has some truth to it because the beta carotene in carrots is converted to vitamin A – a vitamin that is needed for optimum eye health — there are other, and perhaps even better foods to eat. Here are some of those foods:
Spinach as well as other dark, leafy greens like kale contain two antioxidants stored in the macula which is that part of the retina that shields the eyes from damaging light. These antioxidants are lutein and zeaxanthin. Lutein is a deep yellow pigment found in the leaves of plants, and zeaxanthin a carotenoid found in the retina of the eye and in many plants like spinach.
And since the eye has a particularly high metabolic rate – as in, they ust a lot of energy – there is an added need for antioxidant protection.
2. Red Peppers
Red peppers are not just a vegetable to make your throat burn, nose run and eyes water (although the eye watering thing might actually be good). Red peppers contain vitamin C, which is a water-soluble vitamin and a powerful antioxidant.
And aside from helping ward off the common cold, vitamin C helps the body form and keep connective tissue, including collagen that is found in the cornea of the eye. Vitamin C also helps keep your blood vessels healthy, including the delicate capillaries in the retina.
If you look at any healthy food list, you will likely find almonds and other nuts. This is because they are full of Omega-3 fatty acids, protein, potassium, carbohydrates, fiber, calcium, iron, magnesium and your B vitamins. All of these things contribute to the overall health of your body.
But, let’s just talk about almonds. They contain vitamin E, Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect our eyes from free radicals, that can break down healthy tissues. Vitamin E has also been found to prevent age-related macular degeneration and cataracts.
Well, we’ve talked a lot about plants with vitamins, particularly, A, C and E that are needed for healthy eyesight. However, the thing about those vitamins, is they are essentially useless without fat to carry them where they need to go. They are called fat-soluble vitamins.
One great way to get that all-important fat is through fish, particularly fresh salmon and tuna. These fish are meaty and full of Omega 3 fatty acid that helps your blood vessels healthy and strong. These fatty acids help intraocular fluid flows through the pupil, essentially playing a key role in preventing dry eye syndrome and glaucoma.