• Fall Leaves

A Feast For the Eyes

By |2018-08-09T15:01:11+00:00October 20th, 2017|

Our vision helps us see the beautiful fall leaves and their splendid colors this time of year. To ensure your eyes stay in the best shape possible, eat a well-balanced diet.

Here are a few of the top foods for your eyes.

Omega 3 Foods

Fish

Fish, particularly salmon, can be a great food to consume for eye health.  Salmon and other fish have omega-3 fatty acids.  Omega-3 fatty acids can contribute to visual development and the health of the retina in the back of the eye.  Try to choose wild caught instead of farm-raised salmon.  Farm-raised salmon has more saturated fat and less omega-3s than wild-caught salmon.

Enjoy it grilled or broiled with fresh herbs and/or lemon to enhance the flavor.

Almonds

Almonds contain vitamin E.  Eating regular amounts of vitamin E can help prevent age-related macular degeneration as well as cataracts.  Vitamin E guards against unstable molecules that target healthy tissue. Other nuts and seeds contain vitamin E such as walnuts, sunflower seeds, hazelnuts and peanuts.

Almonds can be eaten as a snack, as well as in breakfast cereal, yogurt or salads.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes are a good source of beta carotene, which may slow progress of macular degeneration. Your body converts beta carotene to vitamin A, a nutrient that helps prevent dry eyes and night blindness.  Beta carotene and vitamin A also help reduce the risk of eye infections.  For beta carotene, try these other orange foods – carrots, butternut squash, or dark green foods including spinach and collard greens. Other Vitamin A sources are liver, milk and eggs.

Sweet potatoes can be served baked, as fries, in salads, casseroles, or as hummus.

Oranges

Oranges and other citrus fruits contain vitamin C, which is an antioxidant that can lower your risk of cataracts. Vitamin C contributes to healthy blood vessels in your eyes.  Broccoli, bell peppers, strawberries and cantaloupe are other vitamin C containing foods.

Oranges are great peeled as a snack, in a fruit salad, or drinking the juice.

Kale

Kale is a rich source of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are related to vitamin A and beta carotene. Thought to protect eye tissues from sunlight damage and reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration. Other good sources of these nutrients include dark green leafy vegetables – collard greens, turnip greens and spinach, as well as broccoli, peas, yellow squash, and corn. Needing fat to absorb lutein and zeaxanthin, include a bit of healthy fat such as olive oil when eating these vegetables.

References

5 top foods for eye health. (2016, July 12). Retrieved from EatRight 

7 Best Foods for Healthy Eyes (2017, February) Retrieved from Healthline 

About the Author:

Janet Anderson
Janet Anderson has been a clinical dietitian at NKCH for 8 years. Janet graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in dietetics. In my free time I enjoy spending time with family and friends, cooking, walking and reading.

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