Protecting your eyes, as one of the most important and vulnerable organs in your body, should be one of your top priorities. Especially nowadays, when everyone are staring in their smart phones, tablets, and laptops on a daily basis. Taking a proper care for your eyes is not easy.
Poor eyesight can be caused by aging, genetics, strain, or poor nutrition. In this post, you’ll learn several simple ways to improve and protect your eyesight.
These advices are not intended to substitute a professional medical diagnosis, advice, or treatment. In fact, you should always consult a doctor or another qualified healthcare provider about any question you have related to your health. Don’t delay seeking advice or treatment and certainly don’t disregard professional medical advice because of something you have read in this post.
1. Play Video Games
Playing video games to improve your vision is surely not something you expected to read. However, a recent research have proved the opposite of the popular belief that staring at screens for longer period can damage our eyesight. The research claims that playing action games can in fact enhance the contrast sensitivity function.
Improving the contrast sensitivity function is usually achieved by wearing sunglasses, contact lenses, or surgery, all of which are supposed to correct the optics of the eye. Contrast sensitivity is one of the aspects of eyesight that is most easily compromised.
Certain studies have concluded that playing video games retrains the visual cortex to better use the received information, thus compensating for retinal and optical defects to certain extent.
2. Follow the 20/20/20 Rule
Patients with strained eyes are usually recommended to do this exercise while at work. For every 20 minutes of staring at a screen or reading something, you need to look 20 feet away from you for a period of 20 seconds. This 20/20/20 rule keeps the eye tissues oxygenated and flexible, according to the WorkSafe at Oregon State University. Give your eyes and facial muscles the needed and well-deserved rest.
3. Eat Carrots
You have probably heard how carrots improve vision ever since you were small and your mom nag you to eat them. Although they won’t give you night vision, they are still good for the eyesight.
Vitamin A deficiency can lead to blindness, especially in the developing countries, as well as macular degeneration, cataracts, and a disease characterized by swollen eyelids, dry eyes, and corneal ulcers, called Xerophthalmia. The fact that carrots contain high levels of the carotenoid pigment beta-carotene, which is a crucial precursor to vitamin A, explain their vision-improving abilities.
Moreover, they contain the important antioxidant called lutein. Foods high in this antioxidant have shown to improve the density of the yellow oval-shaped area in the center of the retina known as macula. The more pigment density, the more protection of the retina, and the less risk for macular degeneration.
4. Add High Arginine Foods in Your Diet
Good food sources of arginine include chicken, turkey, pork, lentils, pumpkin seeds, peanuts, and chickpeas. As you can see, there are arginine-rich foods not only for white meat lovers, but also for vegetarians and vegans.
The nitric oxide in arginine improves contractility and vasodilation in the area which drains fluid from the eye. This reduces the eye pressure, which in turn reduces the risk of glaucoma.
Glaucoma is optic nerve damage caused by high intraocular pressure. It is the number one cause of irreversible blindness in the U.S. This means consuming more arginine-rich foods reduces your chances of glaucoma. In addition, arginine has also shown to improve the function of the liver.
5. Eat Dark Green Leafy Vegetables
These vegetables are considered as the healthiest foods on the Planet, and they include spinach, kale, collard greens, etc. Providing a whole array of health benefits, improvement of vision is certainly no exception.
Just like carrots, they contain lutein which is naturally found in the macula of the human eye. By absorbing the so called blue light – high-energy light rays, lutein lowers the risk of light-induced oxidative damage which can lead to AMD (macular degeneration). To reap all benefits from your leafy green veggies, combine them with good fats from olive oil, cashew milk, or avocado.
6. Exercise Your Eyes
According to some experts, this exercise can improve the vision, even though there’s no scientific evidence that it works. Some people say this exercise eases the strain their eyes undergo on a daily basis. Just follow the movement of the arrows given on the image, and share with us if you notice any change in the tension in or around your eyes.
7. Get Outside
Even though we said playing video games is beneficial for the vision, it’s important to know that your eyes need to have enough time to adjust to daylight and far distances. This will decrease the straining in the muscles located around eyes. One study published in 2014, suggests that the risk of nearsightedness in children reduces about 2% with each extra hour spent outside on a weekly basis.
Recently, this risk has been shown to drop by astonishing 15%, according to a study from the University of Waterloo, published in October, 2016. Besides suggesting that spending enough time outdoors is beneficial for the vision of children, the studies also say that it could help adults keep their good vision. In addition, they also say that too much UV exposure can cause retina damage.
8. Drink Water
Keeping your body well-hydrated is one of the crucial things if you want an optimal function of your mind and body. Drinking water will maintain a moist environment, thus preventing your eyes from drying out.
According to optometrists, the most common eye complaint is linked to dry eye and its symptoms. Eyes are just one of the many organs in your body that require fluid all the time, as it allows them to focus, produce tears, and perform all other functions.
If your eyes don’t have the necessary fluids, they won’t be able to blink comfortably, clean out debris (by crying), and even see without straining. Simply, being well-hydrated will keep your eyes clean and enable them function properly.
Being one of the most complex organs in our body, eyes can be affected by many different issues. Having one solution to all eye-related problems is just not possible, so it’s best to listen to your optometrist and rigorously tested scientific research.
Sources: The Hearty Soul | All About Vision