4 Natural Ways to Maintain Healthy Vision
As you age, your risk for a number of vision problems increases. However, when it comes to healthy vision, prevention can often be the best cure. Even if you are currently dealing with vision problems, being proactive about maintaining eye health naturally can help hinder their progression. With that in mind, no matter how old you are, now is the ideal time to learn what you can do to protect your vision and lower your risks for eye-related diseases as you age.
Healthy Vision: Education is Key
When it comes to maintaining healthy vision naturally, bringing awareness to the topic can be key. As such, eye care professionals are reminding their patients to be more diligent as to how they care for their vision.
While diet and lifestyle choices do affect eye health, it's also important to know that there are other factors that raise the risks of developing certain visions problems. For example genetic factors, race, gender and especially age can all impact how likely you are to develop certain conditions.
No matter how many risk factors affect your likelihood for developing vision problems, getting a comprehensive dilated eye exam is essential. This type of exam is important because it helps your eye doctor identify the early onset of vision problems. They will use eye drops to widen your pupils, making it easier for them to diagnose problems before symptoms grow severe. This can help them provide treatment sooner so you can better protect your vision.
Medical Conditions That Can Adversely Affect Your Vision
There are several vision problems that can arise as you age. Here, we will go over several of the most common.
The term "refractive errors" is used to cover a larger category of conditions that affect the eyes of people age 40 and older. They include nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. While this group of conditions affects up to 150 million people in the United States, it's usually corrected with prescription eyeglasses and bifocals. Other than corrective lenses, surgery can correct the lenses in the eyes.
Age-Related Macular Degeneration
Almost two million people in the U.S. are affected by age-related macular degeneration or AMD. This is a condition that primarily affects adults who are 60 years of age or older. It affects the central vision by making it harder to focus on fine details, which means it inhibits the ability to read or drive a vehicle. Depending on the type of AMD you develop, medication, gene therapy or laser surgery can help treat or slow the progression of this disease.
While people of any age can develop cataracts, it's more common in adults over 40. Additionally, it can be a problem that's present at birth. The condition causes a cloudy film to form over the lens of the eye, and there's no treatment that's effective in removing that film. Typically, the individual will have to undergo a procedure to have the lens removed. If the lens isn't removed, the condition will worsen and may lead to blindness.
You may be aware that people with diabetes have a higher risk of nerve damage throughout the body. This is also true in terms of eye health. High blood glucose leads to nerve damage in the retinas of the eyes, and it's common for both eyes to be affected at the same time. As a result, you'll experience early symptoms that affect the vision, such as blurriness or distorted vision. By taking steps to lower your blood glucose levels, you can reduce your risks for diabetic retinopathy or, if you already suffer from the condition, lifestyle changes can slow its progression.
This vision health problem occurs when there's damage to the optic nerve. It can affect anyone and, unless it's treated, it can lead to blindness. However, damage to the optic nerve causes pain sensations to be sent to the brain, and that usually prompts people to seek medical attention early. As a result, most people get treatment before the eyes are permanently affected.
Steps You Can Take to Protect Eye Health Naturally
Although your risk of vision problems increases as you age, there are steps you can take now to protect against or slow the progression of these eye concerns.
Take a Supplement
There are plenty of high-quality vitamins for healthy vision that you can take to help you protect your vision from the conditions mentioned above. Visiochron is an example of a supplement that's specifically engineered to benefit eye health.
In addition to other nutrients, it contains lutein and zeaxanthin, which are compounds that help the eyes block harmful rays that contribute to poor eye health. In combination with the other nutrients contained in the supplement, these compounds can help reduce your risk for developing several eye diseases.
Keep Your Blood Sugar Low
Even if you haven't been diagnosed with diabetes, you should still be working on keeping your blood sugar low. High blood glucose levels create greater pressure in the nerves of the eyes, which can lead to multiple eye health issues. By following a healthy diet that's low in sugar and carbs, you can protect your eyes and overall health.
Eat More Bilberries
As a part of the blueberry family, bilberries are high in antioxidants. Additionally, the dark pigmented skins of bilberries are beneficial to eye health, protecting against cataracts, glaucoma and AMD in addition to other vision problems. Some research has found that the anthocyanins in the skins of bilberries also help improve visual acuity.
Get More Exercise
Hypertension and high LDL cholesterol are contributing factors in a broad range of eye health problems, but frequent moderate to high-intensity exercise can resolve these health issues. By boosting blood flow to the nerves in the eyes, exercise can actually help you improve your vision. It has also been found beneficial in reducing the severity of glaucoma and other vision problems.
Even taking a moderately-paced walk for an hour each day is enough to enjoy some of these benefits. Talk to your doctor before adopting a new exercise routine to ensure you do it safely.