With increased connectivity in our lives our eyes are put under increasing strain with the ever-increasing amount of time that we spend in front of screens. This strain on eye function can lead to dry eyes and deteriorating eyesight. There's a strong link between good nutrition and reduced risk of eye diseases such as cataracts, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma. Foods rich in nutrients including Vitamins C and E, zinc, lutein, zeaxanthin and Omega 3 fatty acids all play their role in helping to keep eyes healthy.
Vitamin A is a key ingredient for healthy eyes, more specifically, the two specific carotenoid forms of vitamin A: lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids are found inside the retina of the human eye and help protect the retina and cornea and defend against age-related eye disorders. Those who smoke or drink alcohol require more vitamin A as alcohol depletes it from the body and tobacco interferes with its absorption. Take steps to give up smoking, eat a diet rich in the carotenoids listed above and manage stress to best support eye health.
Get it from: spinach, kale, beet greens (the leaves of the beetroot), carrots, squash, pumpkin and Swiss chard.
Betalains help protect the specialised nerve signalling that is vital for communication between the eyes and brain.
Get it from: Swiss chard, beetroot and rhubarb.
Studies have shown that nerves in the eye require vitamin C to function properly.
Get it from: Strawberries, kiwi, raw peppers, spinach, broccoli, carrot.
This is another potent antioxidant that may reduce oxidation in the eye and support eye health.
Get it from: avocado, raw almonds, sunflower seeds.
High levels of zinc are found in the retina so healthy levels are thought to help maintain good eye health.
Get it from: sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds.