There are many simple ways you can optimise your sight and reduce your risk of problems in the future.
Eye tests don’t just tell you if you need glasses; they’re also an important eye health check. It’s recommended that everyone has an eye test every two years (– and the good news is that you can get yours free on the NHS).
Smoking and alcohol
Smoking and drinking too much alcohol both increase the risk of Age Related Macular Degeneration (a condition leading to loss of vision). Smokers are also more likely to suffer from cateracts – what better motivation to think about quitting today? If you drink regularly, check you’re staying within the recommended weekly levels – 14-21 units for women and 21-28 units for men (UK).
Studies have shown that what we eat can affect our vision. Two really important nutrients are lutein and zeaxanthin. 1 They’re found in green leafy plants and yellow and red fruits and vegetables. Beta-carotene is also key for eye health – so up your intake of carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and squash.
Interestingly, exercising regularly can boost eye health – possibly by reducing the risk of developing high blood pressure, narrowed arteries and Type II diabetes.
A little sunshine can be great for our health – but less so for our eyes. Never look directly into the sun, and always choose sunglasses with a CE mark which certifies that they have the right amount of UV protection. 1
Look after your eyes – you only have one pair for life.
Written by Ruth Tongue