A quick question; do you eat food that looks good to the eyes or one that is good for the eyes?

Well, a well-balanced, healthy diet is necessary to maintain the overall health. However, a poor diet and junk food eating lifestyle can put your eyesight at risk. Healthy nutritious food is the key to minimising the risk of developing eye diseases and infections.

Overview of a healthy balanced diet for eye care

Nutrition and eye health go hand-in-hand. Hence, it is important to consider the addition of certain food items in your diet to maintain healthy eyes and vision. By adding vitamins, powerful antioxidants, minerals and carotenoids which are easily found in various vegetables, fruits and other wholesome foods in the diet, you can keep the eyes healthy. With the help of a healthy, balanced diet, serious eye complications can be avoided.

Types of antioxidants your eyes need to stay healthy

As it is popularly known that a well-balanced diet is created with a  variety of dairy protein, fruits and vegetables, it is best to incorporate many types and colours of foods in the diet. Foods containing nutrients and antioxidants like Lutein and Zeaxanthin, vitamins A, C, E, beta-carotene, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids should be included in the diet to maintain a healthy vision. These vital antioxidants minimise the risk of chronic eye diseases, including cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.

Top 10 Foods to Maintain Healthy Eyes

Here are the top 10 best foods for your eye care. Majority of these food items are easily available throughout the year and at a reasonable price. The nutrient-rich foods for eye care are:

1. Fish: Fishes like tuna, sardines, salmon, etc. are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids which are considered as ‘healthy’ fats.  These healthy fatty acids contribute to the healthy retina and vision development. Eating such fishes containing good fatty acids help prevent and reverse certain eye conditions like dry eyes.

2.  Carrot: Carrots are universally well-known to be good for the precious eyes. It contains lutein and zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene which convert to vitamin A in the body. These nutrients help to have better vision and maintain the surface of the eye. Eating carrots regularly also aids in preventing eye infections and several serious eye conditions.

3. Kale: Kale contains various vital vitamins, nutrients, and minerals which are good for eye health. This superfood contains the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin that help prevent eye conditions like cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.

4. Eggs: Eggs are simply great for maintaining eye health. The egg yolks contain all vital nutrients such as vitamin A, lutein, zeaxanthin, and zinc which are needed by the body for healthy eyes. Vitamin A is vital for protecting the cornea while Lutein and zeaxanthin reduce the risk of getting serious eye conditions. Zinc is an essential nutrient for retinal health.

5. Almonds: Almonds contain vitamin E that fights against unstable molecules which target healthy eye tissues. Hence, eating almonds can help reduce your chances of  age-related degenerative conditions of the eye.

6. Dairy: Dairy products like milk and yoghurt contain vitamin A and the mineral Zinc. Vitamin A safeguards the cornea of the eye. Zinc helps transport Vitamin A from the liver to the eyes. This mineral is important for the eyes for night vision.

7. Oranges: Oranges along with other citrus fruit contain vitamin C which contributes to healthy blood vessels. This anti-oxidant helps the body fight against the development of degenerative and inflammatory  eye diseases.

8. Red peppers: Of all the bell peppers, red peppers contain the highest levels of antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin, Vitamin A, C and E, and carotenoids. These nutrients are important for detailed and night vision. Regular consumption of red peppers protects the macula from degeneration.

9. Blackberries: Blackberries are an excellent source of antioxidant that slow down the progression of age-related conditions.

10. Peas: Garden pea is a rich source of all the important nutrients needed by the eyes to maintain clear vision. Peas contain lutein and zeaxanthin and eye-friendly beta-carotene along with vitamin C and zinc. All these nutrients support the good health of the eyes and also protect from various eye diseases.

Quick tips to keep your eyes healthy

Here are some excellent tips to keep your eyes healthy,

  • Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration and dry eyes
  • Visit an ophthalmologist or eye doctor regularly
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Wear sunglasses if necessary
  • Manage blood sugar
  • Avoid smoking

Eating a healthy diet and taking good care of the eyes helps in preventing conditions such as eye diseases, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, cardiac disease, and some cancers.

Well, now you know the good food for good looking eyes.

 

Dr. Raja Rami Reddy P

Dr. Raja Rami Reddy P

MD FRCS (Glasg), Chief Retina Surgeon, Founder & Medical Director at Neoretina
Dr. Reddy is a renowned specialist in retinal surgery with more than 20 years’ experience in the field. He is the Founder, Director and Chief Retinal Surgeon at NEORETINA Eyecare Institute, Hyderabad, which is a foremost referral centre for diseases of the Retina. His areas of expertise include Surgical Retina especially complicated vitreo-retinal surgeries for retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, advanced diabetic retinopathy, macular holes and epiretinal membranes. He studied MBBS and MD at the prestigious All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi and was a Specialist Registrar at the Vitreo-Retina Department of the reputed Dr. Rajendra Prasad Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, AIIMS, New Delhi. He is a member of the American Society of Retinal Surgeons and is an active member of the state and national academic societies.
Dr. Raja Rami Reddy P

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