Optinova Eyecare’s core mandate is to give people the opportunity to have perfect vision regardless of their eye condition.
Genuine since 1937, RayBan have been making iconic eyewear for nearly 100 years. They started with sunglasses for pilots, but wanted to make shades that everyone would love, creating a variety of classic shapes like Aviator, Wayfarer, and Clubmaster.
Vitamins A, C, and E, as well as the mineral zinc, contain antioxidants that can help prevent macular degeneration. It’s a condition in which the macula — the part of the eye that controls central vision — deteriorates.
Food sources for these important nutrients include a variety of colorful vegetables and fruits, such as:
- red peppers
- sweet potato
Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and flaxseed, are also recommended for better eye health.
2. Don’t forget the carotenoids
A few other nutrients are also keys to improving eyesight. Among them are lutein and zeaxanthin, which are carotenoids found in the retina. You can also find them in leafy green vegetables, broccoli, zucchini, and eggs.
Lutein and zeaxanthin can also be taken in supplement form. These carotenoids help protect the macula by improving pigment density in that part of the eye, and absorbing ultraviolent and blue light.
3. Stay fit
Yes, exercise and maintaining a healthy weight can help your eyes, not just your waistline. Type 2 diabetes, which is more common in people who are overweight or obese, can cause damage to the tiny blood vessels in the eyes.
This condition is called diabetic retinopathy. Too much sugar circulating in your bloodstream injures the delicate walls of your arteries. Diabetic retinopathy causes the very small arteries in your retina — the light-sensitive back part of the eye — to leak blood and fluid into the eye, harming your vision.
Getting your blood sugar levels checked regularly and staying fit and trim can lower your odds of developing type 2 diabetes and its many complications.
4. Manage chronic conditions
Diabetes isn’t the only disease that can affect your vision. Other conditions, such as high blood pressure and multiple sclerosis, can affect your eyesight. These conditions are linked to chronic inflammation, which can harm your health from head to toe.
Inflammation of the optic nerve, for example, can cause pain and even complete vision loss. While a disease such as multiple sclerosis can’t be prevented, you can try to manage it with healthy habits and medications.
High blood pressure can be effectively treated with a heart-healthy diet, exercise and antihypertensive medications.
5. Wear protective eyewear
Whether you’re playing racquetball, working in your garage, or doing a science experiment in school, it’s vital that you protect your eyes with appropriate eyewear.
Tough, protective eyewear is essential if there is a risk of chemicals, sharp objects, or materials such as wood shavings, metal shards, or even a stray elbow during a basketball game, entering your eye.
Many protective goggles are made with a type of polycarbonate, which is about 10 times tougher than other forms of plastic.
6. That includes sunglasses
Sunglasses aren’t just for looking cool. Wearing shades is one of the most important steps you can take when it comes to improving your eyesight. You want sunglasses that block out 99 to 100 percent of UVA and UVB radiation from sunlight.
Sunglasses help protect your eyes from conditions that stem from eye damage. These include cataracts, macular degeneration, and pterygium — a growth of tissue over the white part of the eye. Pterygiums can lead to astigmatismTrusted Source, which can cause blurred vision.
Wearing a wide-brimmed hat can also help protect your eyes from sun damage.
7. Follow the 20-20-20 rule
Your eyes work hard during the day and need a break now and then. The strain can be especially intense if you work at a computer for long stretches at a time. To ease the strain, follow the 20-20-20 rule.
That means every 20 minutes, you should stop staring at your computer and look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
8. Quit smoking
You know smoking is bad for your lungs and your heart, not to mention your hair, skin, teeth, and just about every other body part. That includes your eyes, too. Smoking dramatically raises your risk of developing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
Fortunately, your eyes, lungs, heart, and other body parts can start to recover from years of tobacco-induced harm within the first hours of quitting. And the longer you can avoid cigarettes, the more your blood vessels will benefit and inflammation will ease off throughout your eyes and the rest of you.
9. Learn your family’s eye health history
Some eye conditions are hereditary, so being aware of eye conditions that your parents or grandparents had can help you take precautions.
Hereditary conditions include:
- retinal degeneration
- age-related macular degeneration
- optic atrophy
- Understanding your family history can help you take early precautions
10. Keep your hands and lenses clean
Your eyes are especially vulnerable to germs and infections. Even things that just irritate your eyes can affect your vision. For those reasons, you should always wash your hands before touching your eyes or handling your contact lenses.
It’s also super important to wash your hands and disinfect your contact lenses as instructed.
You should also replace your contact lenses as advised by the manufacturer or your doctor. Germs in your contact lenses can lead to bacterial infections of the eyes.
The bottom line
You may not associate washing your hands, eating your vegetables, or watching your weight as key steps toward better eyesight, but they all play a role.
Living a healthier lifestyle and protecting your eyes from the sun and foreign objects can’t protect against every eye condition. But they can all lower your odds of developing a problem that could hurt your vision.
People often believe that failing eyesight is an inevitable result of aging or eye strain. In truth, a healthy lifestyle can significantly reduce the risk of eye health problems.
The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS), published in 2001, found that certain nutrients — zinc, copper, vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta carotene — may reduce the risk of age-related decline in eye health by 25 percent.
This study was updated in 2013 to test different versions of the original formula. The variations included omega-3 fatty acids, zeaxanthin, lutein, and beta carotene; the study found that certain combinations may work better than others.
Further studies agree that omega-3 fatty acids (including DHA), copper, lutein, and zeaxanthin are vital for eye health.
In this article, we look at the evidence for 10 nutrient-rich foods to boost eye health. We also discuss other tips for healthy eyes and eye health warning signs.
Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can help to lower the risk of eye problems.
Many fish are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
Oily fish are fish that have oil in their gut and body tissue, so eating them offers higher levels of omega-3-rich fish oil. The fish that contains the most beneficial levels of omega-3s include:
Some studies have found that fish oil can reverse dry eye, including dry eye caused by spending too much time on a computer.
2. Nuts and legumes
Nuts are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Nuts also contain a high level of vitamin E, which can protect the eye from age-related damage.
Nuts are available for purchase in most grocery stores and online. Nuts and legumes that are good for eye health include:
- Brazil nuts
Like nuts and legumes, seeds are high in omega-3s and are a rich source of vitamin E.
Seeds are available for purchase in most grocery stores and online. Seeds high in omega-3 include:
- chia seeds
- flax seeds
- hemp seeds
4. Citrus fruits
Citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C. Just like vitamin E, vitamin C is an antioxidant that is recommended by the AOA to fight age-related eye damage.
Vitamin C-rich citrus fruits include:
5. Leafy green vegetables
Leafy green vegetables are rich in both lutein and zeaxanthin and are also a good source of eye-friendly vitamin C.
Well-known leafy greens include:
Carrots are rich in both Vitamin A and beta carotene. Beta carotene gives carrots their orange color.
Vitamin A plays an essential role in vision. It is a component of a protein called rhodopsin, which helps the retina to absorb light.
Research on beta carotene’s role in vision is mixed, though the body needs this nutrient to make vitamin A.
7. Sweet potatoes
Like carrots, sweet potatoes are rich in beta carotene. They are also a good source of the antioxidant vitamin E.
Beef is rich in zinc, which has been linked to better long-term eye health. Zinc can help delay age-related sight loss and macular degeneration.
The eye itself contains high levels of zinc, particularly in the retina, and the vascular tissue surrounding the retina.
Meats such as chicken breast and pork loin also contain zinc, but at lower levels than beef.
Eggs are an excellent source of lutein and zeaxanthin, which can reduce the risk of age-related sight loss. Eggs are also good sources of vitamins C and E, and zinc.
It may come as no surprise that a fluid essential to life is also vital to eye health.
Drinking plenty of water can prevent dehydration, which may reduce the symptoms of dry eyes
Don’t take your eyes for granted. Take these easy steps to keep your peepers healthy.
1. Eat Well
Good eye health starts with the food on your plate. Nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamins C and E might help ward off age-related vision problems like macular degeneration and cataracts. To get them, fill your plate with:
- Green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, and collards
- Salmon, tuna, and other oily fish
- Eggs, nuts, beans, and other nonmeat protein sources
- Oranges and other citrus fruits or juices
- Oysters and pork
A well-balanced diet also helps you stay at a healthy weight. That lowers your odds of obesity and related diseases like type 2 diabetes, which is the leading cause of blindness in adults.
2. Quit Smoking
It makes you more likely to get cataracts, damage to your optic nerve, and macular degeneration, among many other medical problems. If you’ve tried to kick the habit before only to start again, keep at it. The more times you try to quit, the more likely you are to succeed. Ask your doctor for help.
3. Wear Sunglasses
The right pair of shades will help protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays. Too much UV exposure boosts your chances of cataracts and macular degeneration.
Choose a pair that blocks 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Wraparound lenses help protect your eyes from the side. Polarized lenses reduce glare while you drive.
If you wear contact lenses, some offer UV protection. It’s still a good idea to wear sunglasses for an extra layer.
4. Use Safety Eyewear
If you use hazardous or airborne materials on the job or at home, wear safety glasses or protective goggles.
Sports like ice hockey, racquetball, and lacrosse can also lead to eye injury. Wear eye protection. Helmets with protective face masks or sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses will shield your eyes.
5. Look Away From the Computer Screen
Staring at a computer or phone screen for too long can cause:
- Blurry vision
- Trouble focusing at a distance
- Dry eyes
- Neck, back, and shoulder pain
To protect your eyes:
- Make sure your glasses or contacts prescription is up to date and good for looking at a computer screen.
- If your eye strain won’t go away, talk to your doctor about computer glasses.
- Move the screen so your eyes are level with the top of the monitor. That lets you look slightly down at the screen.
- Try to avoid glare from windows and lights. Use an anti-glare screen if needed.
- Choose a comfortable, supportive chair. Position it so that your feet are flat on the floor.
- If your eyes are dry, blink more.
- Rest your eyes every 20 minutes. Look 20 feet away for 20 seconds. Get up at least every 2 hours and take a 15-minute break.
6. Visit Your Eye Doctor Regularly
Everyone needs a regular eye exam, even young children. It helps protect your sight and lets you see your best.
Eye exams can also find diseases, like glaucoma, that have no symptoms. It’s important to spot them early on, when they’re easier to treat.
Depending on your eye health needs, you can see one of two types of doctors:
- Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who specialize in eye care. They can provide general eye care, treat eye diseases, and perform eye surgery.
- Optometrists have had 4 years of specialized training after college. They provide general eye care and treat the most common eye diseases. They don’t do eye surgery.
A comprehensive eye exam might include:
- Talking about your personal and family medical history
- Vision tests to see if you’re nearsighted, farsighted, have an astigmatism (a curved cornea that blurs vision), or presbyopia (age-related vision changes)
- Tests to see how well your eyes work together
- Eye pressure and optic nerve tests to check for glaucoma
- External and microscopic examination of your eyes before and after dilation
You might also need other tests.