Whether it's making sure you don't miss your exit on the freeway, reading the newspaper or ending up in the right restroom, we need our eyes. With all the stimulation you receive from technology and the environment, protecting your eyes needs to be a daily priority to hang onto your vision longer.
To prevent or slow the development of certain conditions that can affect the eyes, there are simple lifestyle changes that can keep you seeing clearly for years to come.
Common Eye Conditions
Eye problems can be caused by a number of factors including age, exposure to ultraviolet rays (UV), diabetes or eye injury. Preexisting conditions can also lead to further eye issues. Here are three of the most common eye conditions:
Glaucoma -- Glaucoma is the result of too much pressure building up in the eye that can damage the optic nerve. The loss of vision is gradual but irreversible.
Macular Degeneration -- This condition is a result of a deteriorating retina. Continued breakdown of this vital part of the eye can cause vision to continue worsening. Treatments include lasers, medications and supplements.
Cataracts -- If your vision seems blurry or fuzzy, it may be the result of cataracts. Cataracts appear as cloudy patches on the lens of the eye that can impair vision but may be corrected with surgery.
Supplements for Eye Health
Proper nutrition is essential for healthy eyes and certain herbs, fruits and vitamins can help keep eyes protected. Be sure to check out these supplements:
This herb has been a go-to for Europeans for centuries because it helps prevent and relieve the redness of dry, irritated eyes. This herb also reduces inflammation and promotes overall eye health by working with vital organs like the liver, which plays a key role in proper vision.
A recent study at the University of Sydney found this antioxidant-rich berry can protect the retina of the eye, which can be damaged by oxidation and high glucose levels associated with diabetes. These berries are also packed with vitamin C which has also been proven beneficial for the eyes.
Harmful UV rays can cause serious damage to the retina and lutein helps to block these harmful effects. Found in plants, lutein has carotenoids that protect the eyes from oxidative stress as well by working as antioxidants.
A diet rich in essential fatty acids cares for many of the body's tissues, like the brain and heart. Omega-3 fatty acids also look after the rods and cones found within the retina of the eye, helping the eyes function properly for clear vision.
This essential vitamin helps keep vision sharp, especially at nighttime and maintains eye moisture. A vitamin A deficiency weakens the eyes' ability to respond quickly and properly to changes in light.
Other Tips for Protecting Your Eyes
In addition to supplements, a healthy lifestyle is essential for proper long-term vision. Here are 10 everyday practices to keep in mind:
Always wear sunglasses when outside, even in the winter and on cloudy days.
See the optometrist regularly and not just if you wear contacts/glasses. Seeing an eye doctor periodically in each decade of your adult years can keep you from catching an issue too late.
If you're working in front of the computer all day, make sure your monitor is close enough and the text is set large enough so you don't have to strain. You can also adjust the brightness on the screen and be sure to take breaks when you need them.
Wear contacts properly, taking them out at bedtime and when eyes are irritated and change to a new pair as recommended.
Keep eyes moist to prevent irritation. You can use drops available at the drugstore as needed or speak with your doctor if the problem persists. A recent study conducted at the University of Tokyo's School of Medicine also found caffeine to be an effective treatment.
If you're a makeup wearer, make sure to change to new products everything three months to prevent the spread of bacteria that can grow on cosmetics to your eyes.
Know which eye-related conditions exist in your family history, including diabetes, to help you look out for future problems.
Keep your hands clean and make sure not to have anything on them before touching your eyes.
No smoking. Enough said.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet full of fruits and veggies. Maintaining a healthy weight lowers your risk for diabetes which can lead to vision problems.
Keeping your whole body healthy can keep your vision intact. Taking these simple steps can keep you seeing clearly for years to come.
Products you may like:
Carlson Labs Able Eyes Why you may like this product? This softgel from Carlson Labs
contains several ingredients
for eye health, including
lutein, DHA, vitamin A and
zinc. Just one a day can
protect your entire eye from a
host of issues now and in the
Now Foods Eyebright Herb 410 mg Why you may like this product? Perfect for dry, irritated
eyes, eyebright can be taken
daily to prevent the redness
and discomfort. This trusted
herbal remedy has been used
for centuries in Europe and
keeps eyes happy and healthy.
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Statements made about specific vitamins, supplements, procedures or other items sold on or through this website have not been evaluated by eVitamins or by the United States Food and Drug Administration. They are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. As always, please consult with a licensed doctor or physician before starting any diet, exercise or supplement program, before taking any vitamin or medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a problem.