While eye health generally goes hand-in-hand with physical well-being, a few nutrients are particularly essential for your eyes. Consuming foods that are rich in these nutrients, along with maintaining a healthy lifestyle, can help protect against cellular damage and reduce the development of age-related degenerative diseases. In this post, a low-vision specialist shares five nutrients found in food that help optimize eye health.
- Vitamin A. This vitamin is important for protecting the light-sensing cells, called photoreceptors, in your eyes. If you don’t consume enough Vitamin A, you may experience dry eyes, night blindness and other more serious eye conditions. Foods that contain high amounts of vitamin A include liver, egg yolk, dairy products, kale, carrots, spinach and more.
- Lutein and Zeaxanthin. These two nutrients perform as a natural sunblock, helping protect your eyes from harmful blue light. Researchers have also found that individuals with the highest intake of lutein and zeaxanthin had a 43% lower risk of age-related macular degeneration as compared to those with lower consumption. Spinach, kale, parsley, pistachios, and green peas are among the best sources of these eye-friendly nutrients.
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids. While omega-3 fatty acids are not a treatment for AMD, a trusted eye doctor reports that this particular nutrient may benefit those with dry eye disease. The best dietary sources of omega-3 are oily fish and shellfish.
- Vitamin E. A group of fat-soluble antioxidants, vitamin E protects fatty acids from detrimental oxidation and may reduce the risk of age-related cataracts. Almonds, flaxseeds, and almonds are some of the common sources of vitamin E.
- Zinc. Your eyes contain high levels of zinc. This mineral appears to be involved in the development of visual pigments in your retina, and deficiency in zinc may lead to night blindness. Natural dietary sources of zinc include peanuts, pumpkin seeds, oysters and meat.
You can count on Joel McGahen, OD for high-quality eye care services, including eyeglasses and contact lenses prescription, low-vision correction and eye diseases treatment. Call us at (717) 470-7496 or fill out our contact form to set up an appointment. We serve patients in Greencastle, Shippensburg, PA, and the surrounding Pennsylvania cities.