Keep a close eye on optic health
ACCORDING to Shakespeare, the eyes are the windows to the soul. But they are also the sense that 90 percent of us fear losing the most.
Advice like eating well, exercising and watching your weight applies as much to your eyes as your general health, but here some more answers to the eye health
QUEST: QU: Quit smoking. Research by the Royal National Institute of Blind People indicates that smoking doubles your risk of developing agerelated macular degeneration, the UK’S most common cause of blindness. E: Eat well.
Fresh fruit and veg- etables, oily fish, eggs and whole grains contain anti-oxidants which boost your eye health. S: Our eyes are sensitive. Prolonged exposure to sun can lead to a variety of ailments. Some are simply painful or irritating, others can be deadly serious. But remembering to wear a pair of high quality sunglasses can help to keep you safe from the sun’s damaging rays. Sunglasses protect the eyes from painful sunburns and may help slow down cataracts and macular degeneration. T: Have an eye Test. Opticians recommend a test every two years even if you don’t wear glasses.
If you are going to do one thing for National Eye Health Week, have an eye test, especially if you haven’t had one for a while. Eye tests thoroughly examine the whole eye, including the back, and can also help detect more general health conditions.
If you’re under 16, over 60 or on certain benefits, you qualify for a free test. See the NHS website at www.nhs.uk for information. Many opticians also run promotions offering reduced-price eye tests.
When you’ve booked your test, feast your eyes on some delicious fresh food to boost their health.
Dark, leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale contain the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which help to prevent damage to the retina. Research suggests they may help prevent age-related macular de-
generation and cataracts.
Papaya is a good source of beta carotene, which may help to prevent damage inside the eye, and blueberries and grapes contain anthocyanins which may help to improve night vision.
Also recommended are brightly coloured fruit and vegetables such as corn, carrots, orange sweet peppers and oranges, and oily fish like salmon, tuna and mackerel.
Garlic, onions, shallots, capers and eggs contain sulphur, which the body needs to maintain healthy eyesight.
Whole grains and avocado, rich in zinc and vitamin B, are also good. — Derbytelegraph