One of my best friends, Natalie, is graduating from Illinois College of Optometry in a few short weeks. Since she’s quite the eye expert, I thought I’d pick her brain about eye nutrition. Here’s what Ms. McKee shared:
According to the National Eye Institute, women are more predisposed to eye diseases due to hormonal factors, and because women generally live longer.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD), is a condition that destroys the macula, the part of our eye that allows us to read, see fine detail, watch television and recognize faces.
The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS, a major clinical trial funded by the National Eye Institute) found that a combination of beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc (in supplement form) may reduce the progression to advanced AMD by 25 percent.
AMD has historically been the leading cause of blindness in the elderly, usually not affecting people until they are age 65 and older. However, with the diabetic epidemic that is facing our nation, diabetes has surpassed AMD as the leading cause of blindness in the population 40 and over! Damage to the blood vessels in the eye, secondary to poor blood sugar control, is known as diabetic retinopathy.
Therefore, what you eat, and how you take care of yourself not only impacts your waistline, but affects your eyes, as well. Living a healthy, balanced lifestyle, full of nutrient rich fruits, veggies and whole grains can ward of diabetes, high blood pressure, and prevent damage to our eyes. 🙂
What’s the best nutrition for our eyes?