Just like the rest of your body, your eyes require certain nutrients to
stay healthy and keep your vision clear and strong. Eating a healthy diet
rich in whole foods is good for your entire body, but there are certain
foods that are especially good for your eyes.
Eating healthy foods can help prevent
eye conditions like dry eye disease, macular degeneration, cataracts, night vision problems
and eye infections. Some of the must-have nutrients for healthy eyes include:
Zinc:An antioxidant that helps the body absorb vitamin A, zinc has also been
shown to protect against macular degeneration and night blindness.
Carotenoids: These protect the retina from damage by the sun’s rays and help prevent
macular degeneration. Lutein and zeaxanthin are two carotenoids that are
particularly good for your eyes.
Vitamin A:Prevents night vision problems, dry eyes, eye infections, cataracts and
Vitamin C:An antioxidant that helps reduce risk of cataracts and macular degeneration.
Vitamin E: Another antioxidant that can also help prevent cataracts and macular degeneration.
As summer fades into fall, in-season fruits and veggies will also change.
Here are some fall foods that contain vital nutrients for healthy eyes:
Winter Squash:Winter squash is a rich source of vitamin A. There are several varieties
of winter squash available this season, including pumpkins, butternut
squash, acorn squash, spaghetti squash and sweet potatoes.
Pumpkin Seeds:Don’t skip the seeds when you crack into your fall pumpkins this
year. Pumpkin seeds in the shell are a great source of zinc, as well as
varying forms of vitamin E. Roast the seeds in the oven with olive oil
and your favorite seasonings for a delicious, eye-healthy snack or delicious
Black-eyed peas:Black-eyed peas (and legumes or beans of all kinds) will also give your
eyes a boost of zinc, which can help protect your eyes from the damaging
effects of sunlight and prevent macular degeneration and night blindness.
Leafy greens:Arugula, kale, spinach and other leafy green vegetables are some of the
best foods for your eyes and your overall health. These veggies are rich
in lutein and zeaxanthin, two carotenoids that may lower risk of macular
degeneration and cataracts. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology,
one study found that women who ate foods rich in lutein were 23 percent
less likely to develop cataracts than women whose diets were low in lutein.
Ready to stock up on some eye-healthy fall foods? Take a trip to the Dallas
Farmers Market where you’ll find a great selection of all the best produce.