Eye health: Nutritionist reveals foods that protect your eyes
Globally, around 2.2 billion people have impaired vision, with at least one billion suffering from vision impairment that could have been prevented, according to Gill Jenkins, GP and advisor to Rohto Dry Aid.
Fortunately, eating a healthy, balanced diet is one of the greatest weapons you can add to your arsenal of protection against vision loss.
Jenkins said: “Nutrition is a key part of eye health and as a result, including a variety of fruit and vegetables and fresh unprocessed food in your diet is vital.
“Including these foods as part of an overall healthy diet is important to maintain eye health including that of the tear film and the glands that supply lubrication.”
Dark green vegetables
The GP recommended reaching for dark green vegetables, including collard greens, kale, and spinach.
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Packed with plant-based forms of vitamin A, lutein and zeaxanthin, these veggies can cut your risk of long-term eye diseases.
Colourful fruits and vegetables
Eating the rainbow, including yellows, reds, oranges, and blues, can ensure you’re getting a great variety of vitamins for your eyes and body.
Jenkins recommended opting for the likes of berries, peppers, tomatoes and more.
These fruits and vegetables also offer anti-inflammatory benefits which can further contribute to good overall eye health.
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The GP added that oily fish and oils such as rapeseed oil and sunflower oil are also “important” for the health of the eye.
Rich in vitamin D, oily fish could also help improve tear function and prevent dry eye and other eye conditions.
Jenkins said: “Consuming your five-a-day of fruit and vegetables is vital for eye health, yet the National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) shows that only a third of us achieve this.
“Fruit and vegetables contain a variety of nutrients important for eye health.
“Aim for a daily portion of dark green vegetables like kale or cavolo nero. Include a portion of berries in your five-a-day.”
Furthermore, Jenkins added that chicken, dark chocolate and low-fat dairy foods could also complement your vision.
She said: “Aim for a portion of meat…and two portions of oily fish each week for omega-3s and vitamin D.
“Add in a portion of yoghurt or kefir on a daily basis for probiotics.”
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