We’re all familiar with the old saying "An apple a day keeps the doctor away", but does a carrot a day keep the optometrist away? Eating carrots to improve your vision was something our parents would preach to us as children, but should we believe them?
Beta carotene and Vitamin A are found in carrots, which can contribute to eye health. However, OPSM wants people to think beyond carrots and understand the importance of a healthy balanced diet and active lifestyle for good eye health.
More than one in three Australians fear losing their eyesight*, so it we should all be aware how a change in diet can improve our eye health.
Our eyes, much like our bodies, crave healthy foods rich in antioxidants and omega oils. Adding some simple extras to the weekly shopping basket, such as leafy green vegetables, can have a big impact on eye health. Providing eyes with the nutrients they need helps us see better and can help prevent common eye diseases, such as macular degeneration and glaucoma. For the over-40s, snacking on fruit and nuts throughout the day is another great choice as it can reduce the likelihood of dry eyes and macular degeneration.
OPSM has some top food recommendations for healthy eyes:
- Fruit including blueberries and strawberries, as they are rich in antioxidants, which are present in high concentrations in a healthy macula
- Leafy green vegetables like spinach, broccoli and kale for their essential vitamins and minerals, including lutein and zeaxanthin, which are important for good retina health
- Oily fish such as salmon for its omega-3 fatty acids, which can reduce the risk of high eye pressure and glaucoma
- Eggs for fatty acids, lutein, B-vitamins and zinc, which are essential for general eye health
- Garlic to enhance blood flow and boost the immune system, for overall health benefits
- Dark chocolate for its antioxidants and flavinoids, which help circulation and blood flow in the retina