Leading a healthy lifestyle is something that many of us are consciously trying to achieve. From keeping up to date on the latest fitness crazes, eating healthy, and getting a good night sleep there is a lot to consider when trying to improve your lifestyle.
Early in life, we are taught the importance of taking care of ourselves. Practicing good hygiene, maintaining a healthy weight and even bringing mental health to the forefront of discussion is becoming a commonality.
But have you ever thought about how to improve or maintain good eye health? You don’t want to wait until you notice a deterioration with your eyesight before you start taking precautions to take care of your eyes.
April is Women’s Eye Health and Safety month, so when we speak about achieving a more healthy lifestyle, we are referring to eye health as well.
For many, this may be the first you’re really thinking of eye health and that’s okay. Whether for better or worse, you’re probably taking part in things that are already having an impact on your eye health.
Take a moment and reflect on what those could be. To ensure that you’re improving your eye health, here are some easy places to start:
Maintaining a healthy diet has many benefits, one of which, if done correctly is eye health. The eyes are a complex organ, and ingesting the right nutrients will help maintain and even improve your eye function. The American Optometric Association has recommended a list of key eye-friendly nutrients that should be incorporated into your diet:
- Lutein and Zeaxanthin
- Found in leafy green vegetables and eggs
- Vitamin C
- Found in fruits and vegetables
- Vitamin E
- Found in nuts, sweet potatoes, and fortified cereals
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids
- Found in foods such as fish, walnuts, and broccoli
- Found in red meat, shellfish, and legumes
This list goes to show that you don’t have to completely change your diet to eat foods that aid in maintaining good eye health. Take it upon yourself to do some extra research into what foods you can incorporate into your already existing diet that will compliment eye health.
It could be as simple as adding more fruits and veggies to your diet. Each person can customize their nutrients intake to fit their liking.
I also recommend incorporating a high quality, whole-food multivitamin/mineral and fish oil supplement on a daily basis to ensure you’re giving your body the nutrients it needs for optimal function.
Shield Your Eyes from Blue Light
The human eye is only sensitive to visible light on the electromagnetic spectrum. Visible light on the electromagnetic spectrum is seen as the colors: violet, indigo, blue, green, yellow, orange and red. Blue light or high-energy visible light has a short wavelength which means it produces higher amounts of energy.
Have you ever thought about the amount of exposure to blue light your eyes are susceptible to on a daily basis? Do you know where you are being exposed to blue light? Probably not!
Blue light is emitted mostly from the sun. However, we see blue light emitted from devices we use every day like flat-screen televisions, computers, smartphones, tablets and so much more.
It’s nearly impossible to cut out blue light exposure from your daily life. However, it is possible to shield your eyes by arming yourself with glasses that are paired with blue light lenses.
Blue light lenses are designed with the purpose of filtering out blue light and reducing the exposure your eyes have on a daily basis.
Protect Your Eyes from the Sun
No matter where you live, you’re likely to encounter exposure to the sun. As mentioned previously, high amounts of visible light are emitted from the sun. But what about other risk factors that can affect our eye health?
We know that UV radiation emitted from the sun poses many threats to our skin. But did you know that UV radiation can do damage to our eyes as well?
Eyes that are exposed to solar radiation are at a greater risk of developing eye problems like cataracts or macular degeneration. Whenever you are outside you should take the basic precaution of shielding your eyes.
For example, to limit solar radiation exposure and provide adequate protection for your eyes you should invest in reliable shades. Utilizing top-notch sunglasses that are equipped to block UVA and UVB rays are an ideal first defense!
If you can’t get your hands on trusted sunglasses, wearing a wide-brimmed hat that can provide shade over your face is an excellent supplement!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about exposing your body to sunshine. It’s the best natural source of vitamin D and is a wonderful way to boost mood. However, when you know you’ll be out in the sun fo extended periods of time, protecting your eyes and your skin is recommended.
In honor of National Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month, take the time to see if there are small adjustments you can make to keep your eye health in your mix of priorities.
I’d love to hear from you! What are some healthy eye health habits you’ve implemented?