May is Healthy Vision Month, the perfect excuse to meet some new foods and spend more time with some of our regulars here at Food Friendzy. You may not think much about your eyesight and how to keep it healthy, especially if you don’t wear glasses or contacts, but right now is a good time to start.
Taking care of your eyes by eating a healthy diet, taking breaks from the computer, wearing sunglasses and getting regular eye exams can help prevent problems in the future, including macular degeneration, which is steadily on the rise and can lead to blindness. Talk to your eye doctor for more tips and start including these foods in your healthy diet so you can keep seeing the ruby reds of the berries, vibrant greens of the lettuce leaves and longer into the future:
Spinach – Popeye had the right idea about this leafy green guy! Not only can he help make you “strong to the finish” with plenty of iron, but he can also help protect your peepers. Spinach and other greens he likes to spend time with on your plate contain some of the same antioxidants (lutein and zeaxanthin) found in your eye, which help protect the part that allows you to see color. If you’d like even more variety with some of the same antioxidants, try inviting broccoli to the party.
Pumpkin Seed – She is a small little double dose of eye-protecting power with both vitamin E and zinc. Both have shown potential in reducing the risk of cataracts. While she hopes you’ll choose to include her in your meals all year long (not just in October and November), some of her nutty friends, like Almond, Pecan, Pistachio and Walnut, also boast eye-boosting vitamin E.
Egg – She is a staple in the refrigerator and can be used for almost every meal, from a morning scramble to an evening quiche. Not only is she versatile, but Egg is also a good way to get added zinc and lutein for healthy vision. Like Spinach and Pumpkin Seed, she helps keep your eye in good working order while preventing vision-clouding cataracts.
Herring – He’s a grown-up version of Sardine and also a popular choice in several areas of the world! His omega 3 fatty acids have also been shown to help reduce the risk of macular degeneration, in addition to a laundry list of other things like improving heart health. If you’re still not sold on Herring, try some of his other Seafood buddies for added omega 3s.
Bell Pepper – Sure, she adds flavor to fajitas and crunch to salads, but she can also give you a boost of zeaxanthin, that same eye-protecting antioxidant that Spinach can claim. In addition, when you choose her in all her orange-colored beauty, you’ll also be getting a dose of vitamin A. This is the same vitamin found in Carrot that can help improve night vision.
With so many choices of foods to help protect your healthy eyesight, it’s hard to go wrong.