With almost 200 million adults in the United States requiring vision correction and the number increasing each year, solutions are being researched. A nutritional foundation is paramount, especially of certain organic raw non-genetically-modified fruits, vegetables and nuts as well as eggs and certain fish.
A diversified rainbow of colorful foods is important for clear vision. Red peppers, orange carrots, the darkest red beans, dark green leafy vegetables, dark blueberries and blackberries are excellent choices.
Vitamin A is used by the retina in the form of light-absorbing retinal molecules and as a source of moisture for eyes, skin and mucous membranes. Butternut squash, sweet potatoes and carrots contain vitamin A.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that protects the body from free radicals damaging the eyes and causing eye diseases and decreases the risk of developing glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. Good sources are blueberries, sweet red peppers and brussel sprouts.
Vitamin E has been shown by research to slow macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss in people over 60 years of age. One handful or one ounce of almonds equals about half the daily need for vitamin E. Spinach and sunflower seeds are other good sources.
Lutein is an antioxidant and type of carotenoid. The eyes use it for blue light absorption and it protects against macular degeneration . Zucchini, kiwi, blueberries and blackberries, dark green leafy greens like spinach, kale and brussel sprouts are excellent sources.
Proteins decrease the risk of eye diseases like age-related macular degeneration. Good sources are kale, fish, nuts, legumes and eggs. Avoid saturated fats in red meats and dairy products that may increase macular degeneration risk.
DHA is a fatty acid found in the retina and low levels of it have been linked to dry eye syndrome. The richest sources are fatty fish like tuna, salmon, mackerel, anchovies and trout.
Polyunsaturated Omega-3s reduce inflammation in eye blood vessels, as well as keeping hearts healthy. Walnuts and 2 to 4 grams of fresh cold-water fish like salmon, tuna, mackerel and halibut a week are good sources. Cold-water fish have concentrations of healthy fats as they build up thick fat stores for core body temperature stabilization in near-freezing waters. Salmon is one of the safer cold-water fish as it is lower in mercury.
Zeaxanthin and zinc plus the lutein in egg yolks help reduce macular degeneration and cataracts risk. Leafy greens also contain the anitoxidant zeaxanthin in addition to lutein.
Caffeine protects against dry eyes, helping produce tears that keep eyes moist, but drinking more than two servings a day of tea or coffee can deplete the tear film and dry the eyes.
Organic foods maintain a higher nutritional value that helps eyesight and they lack intrusive pesticides, fertilizers and sewage sludge, bioengineering or ionizing radiation. Raw fruits and vegetables contain more amino acids than cooked foods.