Sight is your most important sense. You use your eyes for everything from driving to flirting with that cute new guy across the room. Unfortunately most people put more thought into which toilet paper to buy than their eye health. We are all guilty of taking our eyes for granted but there are a few easy ways you can protect your peepers.
1. Eat Like A Rabbit
According to optometrists, certain foods can have a big impact on your eyes. Anything that is high in vitamin C, lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin E, omega 3 fatty acids and zinc can help your eyes.
Berries oranges and other citrus fruits are a great source of vitamin C. Eating these will help lower your risk of macular degeneration plus they taste great. The vitamin C in these fruits works to keep the cells in your eyes healthy and maintain connective tissue.
Leafy greens like kale are high in lutein and zeaxanthin which are antioxidants. These can help protect against macular degeneration and a number of different cancers.
Nuts and legumes are high in vitamin E. Most people know about vitamin E because it is good for your skin but it can also help prevent cataracts.
Fatty fish like salmon and trout are high in omega 3 fatty acids which are good for your overall health and protect against dry eye syndrome.
Oysters are often cited as being an aphrodisiac but they are also good for your eyes. These little shellfish are absolutely packed with zinc which is used by the body to process vitamin A and make melanin. This can protect you from light toxicity and help night vision.
2. Don’t Smoke
By now everyone knows that smoking is bad for you but most people do not realize that smoking can do serious damage to your eyes. Even a light smoker is playing with fire. Smoking makes you four times more likely to develop macular degeneration and heavy smokers are three times more likely to develop cataracts.
Smoking also leads to higher blood pressure which actually increases your risk of diabetes and glaucoma, both of which can have terrible effects on your eyes. Glaucoma increases the pressure inside your eye and can lead to sight loss. Diabetes can actually increase the acidity of your blood which can damage the tiny blood vessels in your eyes and even lead to blindness.
3. Look Cool, Wear Sunglasses
Sunglasses are not just a fashion statement; they are an essential part of eye health. The sun is constantly throwing out ultraviolet rays. The ones you need to worry about are UV-A and UV-B radiation. These can damage your eyes plus squinting gives your crow’s feet.
The solution is simple, find a nice pair of shades that filter out 99 to 100 percent of UV-A and UV-B rays. Remember that sunglasses are not just for sunny summer days. UV rays are just as damaging in winter. If you are on the water or playing in the snow, sunglasses will also protect you from glare and sun burning your eyes.
4. Get Regular Eye Exams
I will be the first to admit, getting your eyes examined is not the most fun. Someone sits really close to your face, they dilate your eyes and then you have to keep your eyes open while they blow a little puff of air on them. All in all I would prefer a day at the beach but these exams are essential. Even if you think your vision is perfect you still need to get your eyes tested.
Regular eye exams can catch nasty diseases early. This minimize damage and make them easier to treat. Eye tests can also help you better understand your vision. You may be able to see without glasses but often people do not realize their site is deteriorating.
5. Protect Your Peepers, Wear eye protection
Safety glasses are cheap; going to the emergency room to get something removed from your eye is not. If you are using power tools, playing a sport or using firearms, safety glasses are a must. They are great for protecting your eyes plus they come in all shapes and sizes. You can get safety sunglasses, safety ski goggles and even safety glasses designed to increase contrast for shooting.
If you want to know more about your eyes, speak to an optometrist or book an eye test. Remember, if you follow these tips you can drastically reduce your risk of eye injury and disease. Plus you will be healthier overall and look super cool in your new sunglasses.
Featured photo credit: tezmall via tezmall.com