Ocular nutrition is an essential requirement to maintain eye health and vision. Ocular nutrition is required in each part of the human eye to improve healthiness of eye. Eye health and healthy vision is related with healthiness of each and every individual part of eye; the cornea, macula, pupil, iris, lens, retina, the vitreous humor and optic nerve. There are many things related to our vision which can go wrong with ageing. Dust, wind, automobile fumes, chlorine fumes, physical injury and freezing temperatures can create the vision problems. The cornea and the lens can be damaged by ultraviolet rays from the sun. Long hours facing of a computer screen and vibration from driving has also a negative impact on health of eye.
You can improve eyesight or reduce the risk of vision loss naturally without any expensive medical procedure. Some foods having certain nutritional benefits can help to improve eyesight. You can get all the minerals and vitamins needed for healthy eye by consuming a balanced diet which contains all kind of leafy vegetables, fish, fruits and meat. Certain foods are more valuable in the case of eye vision and they must be included in your regular diet to improve eye sight and night vision. They also keep you away from several eye related diseases. List of some foods which are best friends of eyes is given below. Eye problems may be caused by aging, genetics or hereditary factors. But you can give better chance to your eyes to fight against eye related diseases and to improve vision by just adding below mentioned foods in your diet.
Foods that strengthen Eyesight
Carrot is a most common food that associated with eyesight improvement. You must have heard about helpfulness of carrots in improving eyesight. Carrots work as a powerhouse for protecting vision especially night vision because they are rich in beta-carotene, lycopene and lutein. Beta-carotene is good for the retina and protects eyes from damage caused by the sun. Lycopene is a phytonutrient antioxidant which protects eyes from UVB radiation. Lutein is a protective phytonutrient which found in the macula at high concentrations and protects it from free radical damage.
Apricots contain both beta-carotene and lycopene that help in eyesight improvement. These two phytonutrients promote good vision as explained above. In our body, beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A which is an important antioxidant that resists oxidative stress damage of the lens and prevents macular degeneration & cataracts. Apricot also contains carotenoids which help in eyesight improvement.
Whether you eat eggs boiled, scrambled or sunny side up, they are valuable in your diet. The darker egg yolk is more nutritious. Eggs are rich source of sulphur and cysteine, two components of glutathione protein which acts as an antioxidant to resist oxidative damage of the lens. Egg yolks are also rich in lutein which can reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration. In addition to lutein, egg yolks also contain essential fatty acids, zinc and B-vitamins which are all essential for healthy eyes.
Dark berries and grapes:
Blueberries, bilberries, blackberries and dark grapes, these all contain anthocyanins (eye-nourishing phytonutrient) which are very useful for night vision.
Blueberries are associated with the eye fatigue reduction. In addition to anthocyanins, blueberries also contain eye-healthy carotenoids, zeaxanthin and lutein. Blueberries also contain flavonoids like quercitin, resveratrol and rutin which can prevent macular degeneration. They also contain minerals like selenium and zinc which are necessary for proper vision.
Bilberries are the dark purple berries which can be eaten fresh, or can be enjoyed as a jelly or jam. Bilberries are rich in anthocyanosides which can reduce chances of poor vision. Consumption of bilberry is a must to avoid the risk of vision loss. It also contains vitamin A and C which are very important for healthy eyes.
Green leafy vegetables:
You must have heard many times about the benefits of eating green leafy vegetables daily. These vegetables contain abundance of nutrients like calcium, vitamin A, vitamin B12 and vitamin C. Broccoli, spinach, collard greens and kale provide essential minerals and vitamins which are beneficial for good eye health. According to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, these vegetables contain high levels of the antioxidants zeaxanthin and lutein. These antioxidants protect the central retina (macula) from blue and ultraviolet light and protect the eyes from macular degeneration. Regular consumption of these vegetables can reduce the problems related to ageing like the eyesight problems and cataract. Do not overcook these vegetables, if you want to gain the most benefits from them.
Zucchini is another food rich in antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. These antioxidants protect the eyes from macular degeneration and reduce the chances of developing cataracts.
Like zucchini, avocados are also rich in antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. Avocados contain lutein in more amount than any other fruit. Thus consumption of avocados reduces the chances of macular degeneration and cataracts.
Garlic and onion:
Garlic and onions are rich in sulphur which is essential for the production of sulphur containing protein, glutathione. Glutathione act as an antioxidant for the lenses of the eye. Raised glutathione levels prevent and also resolute visual problems like macular degeneration, cataracts or glaucoma. They also enhance blood circulation and boosts immunity.
Salmon, cod, tuna, sardines, mackerel and haddock contain an abundance of healthy Omega-3 fatty acids which has a wide range of benefits for healthy eye. Fish are excellent sources of EPA and DHA, two Omega-3 fats which are vital for cellular health and prevent macular degeneration.
Salmon contain not only Omega-3 fatty acids but it is also rich in Vitamins A and D. These all dietary essentials help to improve your eye health and to boost your brain power.
Walnuts are another supplement rich in omega 3 fatty acids which are beneficial for healthy eye.
Almonds are eye friendly food. Almonds are rich in vitamin E which is major option of cataracts prevention. Other foods in this category are kiwi, peanuts, etc.
Fruits containing Vitamin C:
Citrus fruits like lemons and oranges and other Vitamin C rich fruits like gooseberry, tomatoes and guava help in prevention of degenerative eye disorders like cataracts. These fruits also protect you against infection. You can consume them whole or in the form of smoothies or juices.
Tomatoes contain 2 eye-healthy phytonutrients, lycopene and lutein. These phytonutrients are carotenoids and they are important for healthy vision. Lycopene is well accepted as effective in cancer-protection due to its antioxidant properties protect the eyes from sun damage.
Orange or yellow colored fruits:
Mango, pumpkin and papaya are all rich in Vitamin A, which helps to improve eyesight and prevent night blindness.
Consumption of dark chocolate in regular diet can improve eyesight. Dark chocolate are rich in flavanoids. Flavanoids help to make the lens and cornea strong by protecting the blood vessels of the eyes. To get maximum benefits, consume pure form of dark chocolate which contains minimum 60% cocoa extracts.
Wine, especially red wine, also contains flavonoids as similar to dark chocolate. Flavonoids are beneficial for blood vessels and blood circulation and keep the eyes healthy. It doesn’t mean you should become a crazy wine binge. Controlled consumption is must to utilize health benefits of wine.
Soy is high in protein, low in fat and it contains important fatty acids and other important nutrients that are beneficial for eyes.
Other foods good for eyesight:
Black currants, cabbage, can capers, milk, olive oil, plums, squash, sweet potatoes, and whole grains.
Avoid or cut back the following foods as much as you can to prevent vision loss
Sugar, trans fats, refined flour, foods having high glycemic index like bread, pasta and cereals and monosodium glutamate. Excess of these foods in your diet can be harmful to your eyes and can lead to major eye problems like glaucoma.