It’s a well known fact that a healthy balanced diet has a positive effect on the body’s overall wellness. But many people never consider that your diet has a huge impact on the health of your eyes.
There’s a line of thinking that everyone’s vision fails at some point, and that’s just a fact of life. And while that’s true to a certain extent, we also have the ability to proactively aid and nourish healthy eyesight through the food we eat.
As tempting as white bread is, the highly processed and refined ingredients may increase your chances of eye disease. Choosing whole grain bread products boosts your fibre intake, and slows down your body’s absorption of sugars. Scientists suggest that at least half of your daily recommended grain intake should be 100% whole grain.
Our society tends to cower away from the word “fat”. But the truth is, fat isn’t necessarily bad or unhealthy. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, canola and flaxseed oil, and walnuts can be a big help in the prevention of dry eye. Your diet should include two servings of fish a week. If you don’t care for seafood, you can take flaxseed oil daily, and use canola oil in your cooking.
Just like not all fats are bad fats, not all protein is necessarily good protein. Fat content and preparation methods have a lot to do with whether the meat you consume is healthy or not. Remember that the saturated fats in dairy products and red meat can contribute to age-related macular degeneration. Eggs, nuts, fish, and lean meats are all a good way to take in protein.
Sodium can contribute to the formation of cataracts, so it’s best to steer clear as much as possible. Use less salt on a daily basis, read the nutrition labels on canned food, and keep your weekly sodium intake below 2000 milligrams. Sodium is often used as a preservative, so eating fresh or frozen food can help lower your sodium intake.
Proper hydration can help limit the symptoms of dry eye, so make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Caffeine tends to have a dehydrating effect, so avoid regularly consuming caffeinated drinks. Milk is a good source of calcium, so it’s not a bad idea to have a regular glass of skim milk. All-fruit juices are a healthy way to add flavour, and top off a healthy diet.
It can be hard to get all the nutrients you need in a day. Vitamins and supplements are a good way to round out your diet and ensure you’re feeding your body appropriately. There are even vitamins designed specifically with eye health in mind. Ask your optometrist or pharmacist to help you find supplements to benefit your eyes.
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