Good nutrition plays a crucial role in your overall health. Your optometrist will also tell you that a poor diet can have a negative effect on your eyes. Here are some of the problems a poor diet can pose for your eye health:

Healthy Cells and Tissue

A poor diet will affect the health of the cells and tissues of your eyes. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables will assist in keeping the cells and tissues in your eyes healthy. Fruits and veggies high in vitamins include:

  • Citrus such as oranges and grapefruits
  • Kiwis
  • Apricots, fresh or dried
  • Tomatoes and peppers
  • Raw carrots
  • Green leafy vegetables especially spinach and kale
  • Green peas and beans
  • Brussels sprouts

    Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

    This is a common eye disease that can affect you as you age. Foods rich in lutein and zeaxanthin can help lessen the risks of AMD. Lutein is found in foods such as:

  • Yellow peppers
  • Mango and bilberries
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Broccoli
  • You can find zeaxanthin in:

  • Orange sweet peppers, broccoli and corn
  • Lettuce and Spinach
  • Tangerines and oranges
  • Eggs

    Side Effects of Aspartame

    A poor diet is not only due to the foods you don’t eat, but the unhealthy foods you do. Foods and drinks containing aspartame can place your eye health at risk for many issues including:

  • Blindness
  • Vision issues such as blurring, tunnel vision, flashes, etc.
  • Eye pain
  • Dry eye
  • Discomfort wearing contact lenses
  • Bulging eyes

    Poor Food Choices

    Avoid using store bought salad dressings, mayonnaise, ketchup, barbecue sauces and other pre-made products as these are high in sugars, fats and additives. Instead use natural, fresh ingredients such as simple mixtures of vinegar and heart healthy olive oils to dress salads and make sauces.

    Blood Vessels

    Eyes are vascular which means they rely on tiny blood vessels to function. A diet high in fat can be just as bad for your eyes as it is for your heart. Eating foods rich in Omega-3 such as salmon are ideal for healthy eyes. Reducing your intake of foods such as processed deli meats, high fat dairy and margarine and cooking oils high in saturated fats is also recommended.

    Realistically it is very difficult to eat a diet that has enough of the recommended vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants required for eye health. You can speak to your optometrist about recommended supplements you can take to keep your eyes healthy.