The eyes are vital sense organs of the body, instrumental in about 80% of sight perception. They are complex organs and are constantly under stress because all the tasks we perform throughout the day are indirectly or directly dependent upon our ability to see. Eyes require great care to not only enhance our clarity of vision but also reduce the chances of diseases such as cataracts and glaucoma. Since taking care of your eyes is pivotal, you should be aware of some of the essential vitamins for eyesight.
Vitamins to Improve Eyesight
Choosing the right vitamins for eye health is important. Some of these crucial vitamins have been listed below:
1. Vitamin A
Vitamin A is functional for maintaining a clear cornea that forms the outer transparent covering that allows light to enter inside the eyes. The vitamin enhances rhodopsin which is a protein in the eyes that helps you to see better in low light situations. Vitamin A protects your eyes against eye afflictions and so, vitamin A deficiency when left unaddressed, can lead to problems such as night blindness, dry eyes or xerophthalmia which could lead to vision loss. Vitamin A is a tonic vitamin for eye health as it protects against development of disorders such as cataracts and AMD (which is Age-Related Macular Degeneration).
Aside from supplements, some natural sources of vitamin food are leafy green veggies, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, and bell peppers.
2. Vitamin E
Eye conditions are often linked to oxidative stress. Oxidative stress can be referred to as an imbalance between antioxidants and free radicals in the body. Free radicals are molecules that contain oxygen with an unequal number of electrons. The imbalance in number makes them react easily with other surrounding molecules and may cause oxidative stress.
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant in charge of protecting your eye cells (amongst other kinds of cells) from harm by the free radicals. According to research, regular consumption of Vitamin E enriched foods or supplements can slow down the possibility of developing cataracts.
It is an essential vitamin for good eyesight. Aside from the supplements available readily in the market, some other sources of Vitamin E are nuts (peanuts, almonds, and hazelnuts), cooking oils (sunflower oil, soybean oil and wheat germ oil), avocado, and salmon.
3. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is good for the eyes as well. It has a function similar to Vitamin E. Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant protecting your eyes from free radical damage. It is also essential to make the protein collagen which gives structure to your eyes, especially in the sclera and cornea.
Vitamin C can help lower the chances of cataract development in elderly people. Vitamin C supplements are undoubtedly great vitamins for eye health. A daily intake of Vitamin C supplements above 490 mg was found to reduce the risk of cataract development by 75%. Some natural sources from which ingredients for Vitamin C supplements are gathered are citrus fruits (such as oranges, citron and grapefruits), kiwi, tomatoes, winter squash, sweet potatoes, and Brussels sprouts.
4. Vitamin B6, B9, and B12
The group of B vitamins such as B6, B9 and B12 are considered as vision vitamins for their profound impact on good eye health. This category of vitamins when taken regularly will keep the inflammation (caused by excess homocysteine) under check. Homocysteine is a protein that triggers inflammation. The protein, homocysteine, can also put you at risk of AMD.
If you are looking for vitamins to improve eyesight, then you should consider including the B-group of vitamins in your daily diet. If you want to add them to your diet in the form of food sources, then you can include them as tuna, salmon, dark green leafy veggies, and eggs.
Riboflavin, which is also known as Vitamin B2, is a highly recommended vitamin for good eyesight. Similar to Vitamin E and Vitamin C, Riboflavin plays a key role in reducing oxidative stress in your body.
Health experts say that consuming 1.1 to 1.3 mg of Riboflavin each day can lower your chances of cataract development. If having too many vitamins at the same time seems difficult and unnecessary, then you can decide to include food rich in Riboflavin, Vitamin E, or Vitamin C on alternate days so that you consume necessary vitamins for good eyesight. Some dietary sources of riboflavin that you can easily make a part of your breakfast are milk, mushrooms, yoghurt, and eggs.
Research has proven that regular consumption of vitamin supplements has improved eye health over time. While you may not be able to consume all the foods instrumental in providing you with healthy eyes daily, you can compensate for the loss by always keeping a few vitamins for eye health in stock. However, it is recommended to take supplements under medical supervision. Moreover, maintaining good eye hygiene such as keeping your eyes hydrated with eye drops, cleaning your eyelashes regularly, visiting your ophthalmologists yearly, and not overstraining your eyes will keep you protected from developing eye conditions.