Vision and eye health are among the first things to depreciate as we age. The reason is because the older we get, the lenses inside the eyes become less and less flexible, and the zonules connected to them tend to weaken, making them less effective.
But in addition to these "normal" changes, the eyes can sometimes also become the target of free radicals, and the damage caused by these unstable atoms can cause a wide range of vision and eye health problems.
Causes of Eye Strain
Most people experience some degree of eyestrain from time to time, especially when their work involves sitting at a computer, or reading small print for long periods of time. But the eyes should not really experience strain. If significant strain is felt in the eyes, then it may be a sign of a more serious problem.
Common causes of eye strain tend to be either ocular (along the surface of the eye), or orbital (deep within the eye) in nature. Examples of ocular pain include abrasions, corneal ulcers, pink eye, and eye styes. Orbital pain can be caused by glaucoma, interior eye trauma, inflammation of the iris, and inflamed optic nerves, among others.
How Diet Affects Eye Health
Diet plays a large role in eye health, because it is through the diet that humans get most of their antioxidants. When one's diet consists largely of processed foods and little to no fresh, whole fruits and vegetables, then the body's antioxidant level is going to be weak, leaving their eyes with little protection from free radicals.
The body does produce some level of antioxidants naturally, but this also slows down as we age. Because of this, a constant supply of new antioxidants needs to be obtained through the diet in order to balance the overwhelming numbers of free radicals in the body.
The best foods to eat for eye protection include fruits and vegetables that are orange or dark green, because these have high concentrations of beta-carotene, an essential antioxidant for eye health. These foods include carrots, kale, spinach, oranges, sweet potatoes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and others. Drinking green tea and adding more salmon, walnuts, and eggs to one’s diet will also help protect the eyes.
Can Antioxidant Supplements Improve Eye Health?
Spirulina and astaxanthin are two antioxidant-rich super supplements that are available in supplement form; each has been proven to offer valuable eye health support. In fact, spirulina has ten times the vitamin A and beta-carotene as carrots, making it the most naturally potent source of the carotenoid antioxidant available.
Besides that, spirulina is also considered the world's most nutrient-dense food as it contains between 55 and 70% protein (more than beef, chicken, and soybeans), eight essential and ten non-essential amino acids, high levels of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), linoleic acid, arachidonic acid, complex B vitamins, iron, calcium, phosphorus, nucleic acids RNA & DNA, chlorophyll, and phycocyanin.
Meanwhile, astaxanthin is one of the most powerful antioxidants available and supports eye health. Considered nature's most powerful antioxidant, astaxanthin has the ability to benefit every cell in the body.
The information provided is for educational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or qualified healthcare provider with any questions or concerns about your health. Check with your doctor before beginning any exercise program. Never disregard or delay seeking medical advice because of something you have heard or read in this article or the internet.