The risk of glaucoma skyrockets as you age. Though it is true that individuals with a family history of glaucoma are more susceptible to the eye condition, the foods one consumes also play an important role. If your intraocular eye pressure is high or if you have a family history of glaucoma, it is imperative that you modify your dietary habits to combat this eye disease.
Glaucoma researchers have found the consumption of foods with ample amounts of retinol decrease the risk of glaucoma. Retinol is a form of vitamin A. Examples of foods rich in retinol include cheese, liver, butter and milk. It is interesting to note that researchers have also determined consuming foods laden with dietary fats do not play a part in the promotion of glaucoma. Such fat-loaded foods can certainly lead to obesity and other health issues yet they do not play a role in the onset of glaucoma.
Researchers uncovered a strong correlation between low rates of glaucoma and the consumption of leafy greens like cabbage, kale, spinach, carrots, fruit and fruit juices. It is particularly interesting to note that researchers have found the consumption of orange-hued fruits like apricots and peaches reduces the chances for glaucoma.
Furthermore, foods and beverages rife with antioxidants such as green tea, dark chocolate and regular black tea are also recommended in the battle against glaucoma. However, those who have already been diagnosed with glaucoma or high intraocular eye pressure should not consume considerable amounts of caffeine. Caffeine boosts intraocular eye pressure and will likely exacerbate the condition.
In general, studies have determined leafy green vegetables and foods with diverse colors are essential in the battle against glaucoma. This is attributed to their high concentration of helpful antioxidants and disease-preventing benefits. Let’s take a look at some specific foods that will help in your quest to combat glaucoma and retain crystal clear vision across posterity.
Where to Start: Go Green
Most people have read that carrots are the optimal food for eye health and vision protection. This vegetable is loaded with the antioxidant known as beta-carotene. Carrots are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to preserving eye health and glaucoma prevention.
Incorporate leafy greens like spinach and kale into your meals. You can bake kale chips with olive oil and salt on a baking tray. Or, put spinach/kale in your morning smoothie. Spinach is loaded with antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin. These nutrients are essential to eye health. They are both found within the eyes in especially high amounts. A deterioration of one or either will hinder eye health and possibly lead to the onset of glaucoma.
Furthermore, leafy greens are chock full of other important nutrients that protect vision as a result of their antioxidant abilities. These vitamins include E, A, C and zinc.
Foods that are Loaded in Eye-Boosting Vitamins and Antioxidants
As noted above, vitamins C, E, A, zinc, zeaxanthin and lutein are essential to maintaining eye health. Incorporate foods containing these vitamins and nutrients into your daily meals and you will gradually improve your eye health. These eye-friendly foods will also reduce the odds of glaucoma and other eye diseases. Vitamin C-rich foods include: Tomatoes, berries, citrus fruits, cabbage, peppers, cantaloupe, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and broccoli.
Vitamin E is essential to healthy eyes that stand the test of time. Load up on the following vitamin E-rich foods: Nuts, meat, butter, vegetable oils, egg yolks, leafy greens, wheat, cereal grains, milk fat, avocados and seafood.
A steady influx of foods containing vitamin A will keep your eyes in tip-top shape and reduce the odds of glaucoma. The following foods are chock full of this essential vitamin: Liver, whole milk, egg yolks, carrots, mustard greens, sweet potatoes, pink grapefruit, kale, turnip greens, broccoli, cantaloupe, apricots, collard greens, papaya, red peppers, cheddar cheese and beet greens.
As noted above, kale and spinach are rich in lutein and zeaxanthin. Additional foods containing these eye-friendly nutrients are collard greens, broccoli, celery, parsley, green beans, corn, lettuce, pumpkins, green peas, Brussels sprouts, cucumbers, green peppers, green olives and summer squash.
Zinc is an element naturally found in certain foods and added to others. It helps the human body in a number of ways including boosting eye health. Incorporate the following zinc-rich foods into your diet to combat glaucoma: Soybeans, eggs, seafood, lean meats, peanuts, green leafy vegetables, oysters, cheese and whole bran.
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