Fall Foods to Protect Your Eyes from Macular Degeneration

Posted By Key-Whitman Eye Center || 17-Oct-2014

Fall foods to protect your eyes from macular degenerationAge-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss in people over age 55. Conventional wisdom says that age-related vision problems are inevitable, but research suggests otherwise.

Macular degeneration is the degeneration of the macula, the part of the eye responsible for central vision. When the macula is compromised, vision loss can occur in the center of one’s field of vision.

Improved nutrition can help slow vision loss with age due to conditions such as macular degeneration, according to D. Max Snodderly, Ph.D., head of the laboratory at The Schepens Eye Research Institute in Boston, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School. Specifically, eating fruits and vegetables that contain the two carotenoid pigments, lutein and zeaxanthin, can help prevent vision loss.

The highest concentration of lutein and zeaxanthin in the body is found in the eye, in the central region of the retina, and research suggests that increasing the concentration of lutein and zeaxanthin in the eye is what helps to prevent vision loss due to age-related macular degeneration.

Carotenoids are the pigments that provide the colors in fruits and vegetables. Lutein and zeaxanthin are primarily found in broccoli, corn, squash and dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale.

Simple Fall Dinner for Healthy Eyes

Load up on lutein and zeaxanthin with this simple and delicious dish of corn with winter squash, kale and bacon.

Ingredients

  • 9 bacon slices, chopped
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/3-inch pieces
  • 15 ounces of kale or baby spinach leaves
  • 1 (16-ounce) package frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 6 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Preparation

Sauté bacon in large pot over medium heat until crisp, about 10 minutes. Add onions and squash. Sauté until squash is almost tender, about 12 minutes. Add kale or spinach and corn. Toss until leaves are wilted and corn is heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in basil. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl and serve.

For more fall foods for healthy eyes, readhere.

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