The summer season is here and everyone is focussed on healthy eating for our body. One focuses on eating fruits and vegetables that make their heart, bones and muscles fit and healthy. But, do you focus on keeping a summer diet chart for keeping our vision healthy?
It is very important to keep our eyes healthy just like our body. It is so to prevent age-related eye problems like macular degeneration, vision loss, dry eyes, cataracts and problems with night vision. Keeping an overall healthy lifestyle is great, but ensuring a good diet is even more beneficial. Adding fruits, vegetables and healthy dishes to your diet during the summer months to keep your eyes healthy is absolutely essential.
Here is our summer diet chart that includes 5 items that ensure a healthy vision-
Carrots are rich in beta-carotene which is an antioxidant that helps reduce the chances of getting cataracts. Carrots also prevent macular degeneration in the eyes. Carrots get their colour from beta-carotene which helps in absorbing the light that passes through the eye and helps in adjusting the eyes during low light levels at night.
Aim to eat carrots raw or cook them lightly in olive oil as it helps break down the thick cell walls of the vegetable and makes it easier for the body to absorb the nutrients.
Green & Leafy Vegetables
Green and leafy vegetables prevent macular degeneration and cataracts in the eyes. This is a condition which causes progressive damage to the retina, resulting in a gradual loss of vision. Green vegetables like kale, spinach, broccoli and lettuce must be eaten regularly. These veggies are rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, which are two nutrients that have antioxidant properties and help to prevent cell damage.
Green vegetables are also rich in nutrients like calcium, vitamin C, vitamin K and iron. All these are essential for a healthy vision.
Doctors explain that we have lutein and zeaxanthin as pigments in the back part of the eye. Lutein helps in protecting the retina from damage. It protects the eye by forming pigments in the macula that filter out harmful blue light waves, which can damage the eye. The more lutein pigments your eye contains, the less you will suffer from age-related macular degeneration.
Your summer diet chart for a healthy vision must include dark berries. Dark berries contain photo-nutrients that improve night vision and make vision sharper. Bilberries were eaten by Second World War pilots to sharpen their sight for night missions. Dark berries such as bilberries and blackberries are rich in anthocyanins, which prevent and slow blindness caused by macular degeneration and cataracts.
These berries also strengthen the capillaries that deliver blood and nutrients to the eye. You can eat berries as a fruit or add it to your cereal bowl or make a fruit smoothie with them.
Fishes like salmon, sardines, tuna and mackerel contain essential nutrients that are good for the health of your eyes. These fishes are rich in omega-3 fatty acids which protect against age-related macular degeneration and dry-eye syndrome. Fishes like trout and anchovies are extremely rich in docosahexaenoic acid, a fatty acid that’s found in the retina. Low levels of docosahexaenoic acid in the eye can cause a dry-eye.
Legumes are a class of vegetables that include beans, peas and lentils. These are highly nutritious, low in fat and high in nutrients like folate, potassium, iron and magnesium.
Chickpeas, kidney beans and lentils are legumes that are rich in zinc. It is also found in oysters, beef, poultry and pumpkin seeds. Zinc helps release vitamin A from the liver so that it can be used in eye tissues. Zinc deficiency in the body can cause deterioration of the macula, at the centre of the retina.