You’re as young as you feel, but if your vision is reduced, your quality of life is affected. As you get older, the risk of developing eye conditions increases.
For this reason, regular visits to your eye doctor become even more important. In September, the AAO celebrates Healthy Aging Month.
Keep reading to learn tips to help your eyes stay healthy during Healthy Aging Month!
Look Into Healthy Habits
Some of the things that keep your body healthy and youthful are things that can help maintain your vision. It’s best to make wise choices regarding eating, sleeping, exercise, and other lifestyle habits.
High blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes affect the entire body, and your eyes aren’t exempt. If you have these health conditions, a change in vision, such as blurriness, may be a warning sign of either high blood pressure or high blood sugar.
If you’re experiencing this, see your eye immediately. Both conditions can be managed with careful attention to exercise, diet, and medication.
Eating For Your Eyes
As you grow older, you’re at greater risk for age-related macular degeneration, which is the deterioration of the part of the retina called the macula. Your macula is responsible for the central portion of your vision.
The macula is made up of lutein and zeaxanthin, carotenoids in the same group as the beta-carotene found in carrots. Used by the body to make vitamin A, carotenoids are essential in your diet.
Eat them daily, and you may help prevent or delay AMD from affecting your eyesight. One of the best sources of lutein is dark leafy greens. Try spinach, Swiss chard, and kale.
Other good sources are corn, egg yolk, romaine, zucchini, broccoli, brussels sprouts, peas, and kiwi. The best sources for zeaxanthin are corn, orange bell peppers, kale, collard greens, Swiss chard, spinach, oranges, and mango.
Cooking vegetables can increase the absorption of lutein and zeaxanthin, and adding fats helps absorption. If you only have time for one change to your diet, make it eggs. Eggs may be the most absorbable source of lutein and zeaxanthin.
Sleeping For Your Eyes
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine stresses that, like your brain and body, your eyes heal as you sleep. Get less sleep, and you’ll feel it.
A night of poor sleep may cause your eyes to produce fewer tears, leading to dry, itchy, or bloodshot eyes. This makes your eyes more prone to eye infections.
Increased sensitivity to light or blurry vision can occur. Adults should get seven or more hours of sleep each night.
You’ll feel better and look better when you’re well rested.
Exercising For Your Eyes
You don’t need to be a weekend warrior to preserve your sight. Slow, steady, and gentle are what you should aim for.
Walking, yoga, pilates, and stretching are all excellent choices. Make them a daily routine, and your eyes will benefit.
Quitting For Your Eyes
If you’re a smoker, it’s time to give up the habit. Reducing your alcohol consumption is recommended; quitting drinking is ideal.
In the same way that your skin shows the ravages of smoking and drinking, these habits can also harm your eyes. It’s best to wean yourself from both, and you’ll see how good you look and feel.
Do you want to learn more ways you can help keep your eyes healthy? Schedule an appointment at EyeHealth Northwest in Happy Valley, OR, today!