The saying goes that you are what you eat, but when it comes to your eye health, this idiom couldn’t be truer. With the bombardment of health advice at hype about the latest superfoods coming at you right, left and centre, it can be hard to keep up with what you should actually be eating to make a difference to your health, but more importantly your sight.
Your overall eye health depends on several nutrients including vitamins A and C, minerals, omega-3 fatty acid, antioxidants, bioflavonoids and carotenoids. That’s why we’ve done the research and come up with the best superfoods for your eyes.
While we can’t promise these foods will improve your vision, making these essential nutrients a part of your diet can boost your eye health for the better.
Everyone knows that leafy greens are full of vitamins and nutrients. But specifically, they are rich in vitamin A which helps to protect the cornea, as well as lutiein which protects your eyes from ultra violet light and zeaxanthin which is a chemical compound that aids visual development.
Spinach, kale and Swiss chard are the recommended leaves when it comes to your eyes, while broccoli will also have you reaping benefits. Rich in vitamin B2 and phyto chemical antioxidants, broccoli can help to prevent and slow the progression of cataracts as well as reduce blurred vision and light sensitivity.
Berries as a food group are full of nutrients that promote healthy eyes. Rich in vitamin C, blueberries, strawberries and blackberries can reduce blood pressure which can lead to inflammation and prevent your eyes from drying up and boost cell regeneration.
Mulberries, cranberries and bilberries also contain similar nutrients which help strengthen eyesight.
Carrots are beneficial to eye health because they contain beta-carotene which is responsible for activating vitamin A. Also containing lutein, carrots help to prevent night blindness, promote clear corneas and protect the retina, thereby lowering the risk of macular degeneration and the development of cataracts.
Other orange-coloured vegetables such as sweet potato also provide similar benefits because it’s nutrient-dense in beta-carotene, fiber, potassium and vitamin A. Plus, they can also reduce the risk of contracting bacterial and viral infections such as conjunctivitis.
This one is easy to get on board with. Nutritionists are forever detailing the benefits that dark chocolate can have for your overall wellbeing, so there’s no need to feel guilty about tucking into a bar.
In terms of eye health, dark chocolate has antioxidant properties including flavonol compounds which increase blood flow to the retina and improve vision in dim lighting and low visibility.
Not only are they the most Instagram-able fruit – avocados are nutrient-rich with vitamins C, E and B6, as well as beta-carotene and lutein all present in their make-up. Considered one of the most popular superfoods, avocado is a fruit that works for sweet and savoury dishes alike.
Helping to prevent macular degeneration, cataracts and degenerative sight due to ageing, avocados can also help to relieve eye stress which leads to poor vision.
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