18 Aug 2016 • CTVWatch on network
Some eye popping statistics are that 4.25 million Canadians are currently living with a serious eye disease and the prevalence of vision loss in Canada is expected to increase nearly 30 per cent in the next decade!
And 1 in 7 Canadians will develop one of the four most common eye diseases in their lifetime including diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, cataracts & age-related macular degeneration.
The good news is there is a lot you can do including foods to eat more of and antioxidants you can take to reduce your odds of eye disease.
Keeping Healthy eyes include managing your screen time. Canadians spend 376 minutes a day looking at screens! My advice is to employ the 20-20-20 computer rule. Every 20 minutes, I want you to take a 20 second break and focus your eyes on something at least 20 feet away.
We need to protect our eyesight from the ultraviolet sun rays. UV protecting Sunglasses or UV eyewear and contacts are key to help in the prevention of cataracts and macular degeneration. Never wear cheap non UV blocking sunglasses as they dilate your pupils which will let even more ultraviolet radiation in!
Make smart diet choices – consume dark and leafy greens, such as spinach, kale and broccoli, sweet potatoes and squash, dried apricots as well as omega-3 fatty acids found in fish, nuts and seeds, and one of my favourites: Red Palm fruit oil which has a high smoke point which is great to grill and stir fry with but best of all rich in eye healthy carotenoids and Tocotrienols.
Sometimes supplementing your diet can help depending on your condition. You may want to research select products proven to support eye health such as Lutein, beta carotene, and zeaxanthin, astaxanthin, alpha lipoic acid, and omega-3 high in DHA
But, let’s unblur all the lines. Eye management 101 is about knowing when and who to see about eye care.
Keep in mind that factors like an increase in artificial light, more time spent looking at TVs, smart phones, and computer screens, more stress and fewer nutrients in diet may all contribute to a decline in eye health.
If you’re concerned about your eyes, speak to your family doctor. They may refer you to an optometrist, ophthalmologist, retina specialist, or even a natural health care provider to determine micronutrient deficiencies.