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24 tips to protect eyesight
Kinds:Bluelight Encyclopedia   Time:03/11/2012   By:Tracy Wu

24tips to protect eyesight


1.Mix a cup of blueberries with a cup of yogurt for breakfast thismorning.Blueberries are one of the richest fruit forms of antioxidants, and astudy published inThe Archives of Ophthalmologyfound that women and men who atethe greatest amount of fruit were the least likely to develop age-relatedmacular degeneration (ARMD), the leading cause of blindness in older people.


2.Spread bilberry jam on your morning toast.Or take a bilberry supplement everymorning. The berries contain compounds called anthocyanosides, which mayprotect the retina against macular degeneration.


3.Have spinach twice a week.Could be a spinach quiche, steamed spinach, or maybeTuscan spinach -- sautéed in some olive oil with garlic and raisins. Regardless,be sure to get your spinach. Studies find that lutein, a nutrient that isparticularly abundant in spinach, may prevent age-related macular degenerationand cataracts. Ideally, get your lutein in combination with some form of fat(olive oil works great) for the best absorption.


4.Cook with red onions, not yellow.Red onions contain far more quercetin, anantioxidant that is thought to protect against cataracts.


5.Aim your car vents at your feet -- not your eyes.Dry, air-conditioned air willsuck the moisture out of eyes like a sponge. Aim the vents in your car awayfrom your eyes, or wear sunglasses as a shield. Dry eyes can be more than aninconvenience; serious dryness can lead tocorneal abrasions and even blindnessif left untreated.


6.Move your computer screen to just below eye level.Your eyes will close slightlywhen you're staring at the computer, minimizing fluid evaporation and the riskof dry eye syndrome, says John Sheppard, M.D., who directs the ophthalmologyresidency program at Eastern Virginia MedicalSchool in Norfolk, Virginia.


7.Take a multivitamin every day.Make it a habit, like brushing your teeth. Amajor study suggested that if every American at risk for age-related maculardegeneration took daily supplements of antioxidant vitamins and zinc, more than300,000 people could avoid ARMD-associated vision loss over the next fiveyears. Other studies find that women who took vitamin C supplements for atleast 10 years were 77 percent less likely to show initial signs of cataracts thanthose who took no supplemental C. So take a multi with at least 150 mg vitaminC, or take a separate C supplement.


8.Walk at least four times a week.Some evidence suggests that regular exercisecan reduce the intraocular pressure, or IOP, in people with glaucoma. In onestudy, glaucoma patients who walked briskly four times per week for 40 minuteslowered their IOP enough so they could stop taking medication for theircondition. It's also possible -- although there's no proof yet -- that walkingcould also reduce your overall risk of developing glaucoma.


9.Eat fish twice a week.A study from Harvard researchers presented at the 2003Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology's annual meeting evaluatedthe diets of 32,470 women and found those who ate the least amount of fish(thus getting the least amount of omega-3 fatty acids) had the highest risk ofdry eye syndrome. Even tuna fish (yes, the kind that comes in a can) protectedagainst the syndrome. If you can't stand fish, or are worried about mercuryconsumption, try fish-oil supplements to get your omega-3s.


10.Twice a week, walk away from greasy or sweet snacks.A 2001 study found thatpeople whose diets were high in omega-3 fatty acids and low in omega-6 fattyacids (found in many fat-filled snack foods like commercially prepared pie,cake, cookies, and potato chips) were significantly less likely to develop ARMDthan those whose diets were high in omega-6 fatty acids and low in omega-3fatty acids. In fact, if your diet was high in omega-6 at all -- even if youstill ate plenty of fish -- the protective effects of the omega-3 fatty acidsdisappeared.


11.Have sweet potatoes for dinner tonight.Since they are rich in vitamin A, thesesweet spuds can help improve your night vision.


12.Turn down the heat in your house.Heat dries out the air, which, in turn, driesout your eyes. In the winter, you might also try adding some humidity with ahumidifier or even bunching a lot of plants together in the room in which youspend the most time.



13.Wear sunglasses whenever you leave the house.When researchers examined therelationship between exposure to sunlight and cataracts or ARMD in Chesapeake Bay fishermen, they found that fishermen whoprotected their eyes from the harsh glare of the sun and its damaging UV rayswere significantly less likely to develop these conditions than those who wentbare-eyed. Wear the sunglasses even when it's not sunny out, says Dr. Sheppard.They protect your eyes from the drying effects of wind.


14.Wear a broad-brimmed hat along with your sunglasses.A wide-brimmed hat or capwill block roughly 50 percent of the UV radiation and reduce the UV radiationthat may enter your eyes from above or around glasses.


15.Pick some Southern greens for dinner tonight.Because they are high in luteinand zeaxanthin, greens like collards and kale (delicious when lightly steamedwith a splash of hot pepper vinegar) may reduce your risk of developing bothcataracts and ARMD, and may even slow progression of these diseases oncethey've begun. Both have strong antioxidant properties, which may help repairsome of the damage that contributes to both conditions.


16.Roast some fresh beets for an eye-saving side dish.Beets get their deep redcolor from phytochemicals called anthocyanins, powerful antioxidants thatprotect the smaller blood vessels in your body, including those in your eyes.


17.Switch to "lite" salt or use spices and herbs instead of salt.Studiesfind that high-salt diets increase your risk of certain types of cataracts, sostay away from the salty stuff. And while you're de-salting your diet, don'tforget the salt in processed foods. Check labels for "no-salt" or"no-sodium," or "low-salt" or "low-sodium" tagswhen buying canned and other prepared foods.


18.Dab an essential oil of jasmine, peppermint, or vanilla on your arm andsniff.Jasmine, says scent researcher Alan R. Hirsch, M.D., of the Chicago-basedSmell and Taste Treatment Research Foundation, increases the beta waves in thefrontal lobes of your brain, promoting wakefulness and enabling you to focusbetter and see things more acutely. All three scents stimulate the limbic systemin your brain, which, in turn, stimulates the rods in your eyes, which help yousee in dim light.


19.When you're working or reading, set your alarm to beep every 30 minutes.Usethis as a reminder to look up and away from your computer or book to somedistant point for 30 seconds. This helps prevent eye fatigue and eyestrain.


20.Check your blood pressure every month.You can do this yourself with a homeblood pressure kit, at the doctor's office, or at the pharmacy. The two leadingcauses of blindness in the United States are high blood pressure and diabetes,both of which damage blood vessels.


21.Replace your mascara every three months and other eye makeup once a year.Eyemakeupis a great repository for bacteria, which can easily be transferred to youreyes and cause infections.


22.Use eye makeup remover every night before going to bed.This prevents smallpieces of mascara from winding up in your eye and possibly scratching yourcornea.


23.Wear goggles when you're doing carpentry or even yard work.Debris in the eyecan lead to corneal abrasions, which can ultimately damage your vision. Alsouse protective goggles when you're swimming to protect your eyes from thechlorine.


24.Use a fresh towel every time you wipe your face.Sharing face towels is a greatway to get conjunctivitis, the infection also known as pinkeye.

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