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Lifestyle, Diet, Nutrition, Exercise…and Your Eyes

How your body functions and how healthy it is, is often effected and dependent on many factors. Genetics plays a large roll in this of course. That we can not control. There are other variables that play a large role in our overall health as well. Lifestyle, diet, nutrition and exercise are all major players in regards to our health that we can control. All of these items do not only contribute to our overall health but also our ocular health.

Speaking of lifestyle exclusively, smoking cigarettes has been identified to be damaging and very harmful not only to our overall health, but also your eyes. There is increased incidence of cataracts and macular degeneration related to smoking. Substance abuse can also lead to certain eye diseases that may also cause permanent eye damage along with vision loss.

Talking diet, what we eat and drink is like the fuel that runs our high performance bodies (including our eyes). My mom always said, “eat your vegetables” and she couldn’t have been more right The green leafy vegetables are the best things to eat when we’re talking eyes. Kale, spinach, broccoli, asparagus and carrots get top billing. These vegetables not only create sharper vision but also help retard the progression of macular degeneration once it’s been diagnosed. The tomato is beginning to become known as the “miracle vegetable”.  There may be some positive effects on your eyes from eating tomatoes also.

Good nutrition goes hand in hand with diet to promote healthy eyes and good vision. Vitamin A, Zinc and Lutein get top billing as far as nutrition and supplements is concerned. Zinc and Lutein specifically help fight macular degeneration also. Typically, a minimum of 40 milligrams of Zinc per day (without exceeding 70 milligrams) is ideal for this. It’s not been confirmed but there’s belief amongst some that Ginko Biloba and Billberry may also be helpful supplements for your eyes.

Exercise is of course good for everything in regards to optimal health including your eyes. As you exercise your metabolism speeds up. This is good for more than one reason. As your metabolism speeds up, the more readily your blood vessels can deliver oxygen and nutrients throughout your body along with eliminating toxins rather than them sitting and bogging you and your eyes down.

So as you can see, there are a lot of things you can do to improve ocular health along with your vision. I encourage you to take these steps and always protect your eyes as well. Always have UV protection in all your ophthalmic eye wear and in particular your quality sunglasses to be worn at all times when outdoors. At the Vision Centers, your eye health is our first priority. You only have two; let’s maintain them.