9 Healthy Foods for Your Eyes
A lot of the greens you put in your salad are high in two nutrients: lutein and zeaxanthin. These have been linked to a reduced risk of age-related eye diseases such as macular degeneration and cataracts. They're also high in Vitamin A. Eating your greens can one day help to save your eyesight.
This doesn't mean you have to strictly eat the same simple salad every day. Many leafy greens are delicious as part of pastas, as side dishes like kale or spinach, or as add-ins for casseroles, soups, and more.
Eggs are also foods that are high in lutein and zeaxanthin. Like leafy greens, they can help stave off age-related eye diseases. Of course, you can combine these two foods and put hard-boiled eggs in your salad.
Eggs are also delicious cooked any number of other ways: scrambled with potatoes, poached on toast, in Eggs Benedict. There's a surprising amount of ways you can eat eggs that you probably haven't tried, so if you get bored with the same old approach every day, try something new!
Fish contain Omega-3 fatty acids. These have a number of benefits for our health. This can range from brain function to helping our joints and even to reinforcing our immune systems. Omega-3 fatty acids also play a vital role in how our eyes work.
Fish are high in Omega-3 fatty acids. The best part of this is that most everyone likes some type of fish, even if they have strong dislikes. Maybe you love a baked, flaky white fish. Maybe you prefer smoked salmon. Perhaps it is tuna that's your favorite, or you love breaded cod. Perhaps you're a sushi fan. There's a wide array of fish that suit most tastes, and a ton of unique and different ways to cook (or not cook!) them.
Vitamin C is crucial in eye health. As an antioxidant, it may lower the chances of developing age-related diseases such as macular degeneration and cataracts. Most fruits and vegetables contain some Vitamin C, but citrus fruits are highest in it.
Citrus fruits include oranges, tangerines, grapefruits, lemons, limes, and more. You can simply peel and eat some like oranges and tangerines raw. This would be difficult to do with lemons and limes, but you can flavor your water, use lemons for great pork chops, or use limes in Mexican cooking. For something really different, try making roasted citrus fruit salad with blood oranges, regular oranges, lemons, grapefruit, lime, and a tiny bit of red onion.
Beans are treasure troves of zinc and are healthy in a ton of other ways. They're a staple that you can use in the cooking of many countries, and can taste great beside some other foods here. From bean salad to burritos, and baked beans to black bean casserole, there's a delicious bean dish for every taste and mood.
Also, try sweet potatoes and squashes for foods high in Vitamins A and E. These are often staples during the winter holidays because this is when they're harvested, but you can find canned versions the rest of the year. There's no rule that says you can't enjoy them year-round.
Yes, carrots can help your long-term eyesight. No, they won't give you magical night vision. Carrots have Vitamin A, which helps the structure of the cornea. This is the clear part in the front of your eye. Vitamin A deficiency has been known to lead to blindness among children who suffer from malnutrition. Some other foods here also have vitamin A: leafy greens like spinach and sweet potato, for instance. All foods with vitamin A need zinc to help the body process it.
Nuts are very high in zinc. That means they supply a helpful nutrient that aids in our bodies' ability to process Vitamin A. Most nuts are high in Vitamin E as well. This is another antioxidant that can help in the same way Vitamin C does.
Almonds and peanuts are both high in Vitamin E, but you'll find it in most nuts.
Oysters are one of the foods highest in zinc. A range of other shellfish are also high in zinc. These are also pretty healthy options.
Healthy Diet Helps in Other Ways
A healthy diet doesn't just mean that you're eating nutrients and vitamins that help your eyes. It also means your body stays healthier. Many eye conditions have been linked to health conditions such as diabetes. That means a good diet that keeps you healthy also keeps your eyes healthy – and that's before you even start factoring in those nutrients and vitamins.
Don’t forget: as important as diet is for your vision, regular checkups and screenings are equally essential! Schedule your appointment today.