The eyes are the most delicate of our sense organs and they need extra care to ensure the normal vision even into the later years of one’s life. Consuming nutrient rich food will provide the necessary vitamins for the flawless functioning of the eyes. The role of vitamins is significant in the functioning of the eyes as it helps to prevent about 25% of the eye disorders such as diabetic retinoplasty, macular degeneration, cataract and glaucoma which sets in with aging.
The top 5 eye vitamins for eye health are:
It plays an important role in the health of the retina of the eye and also in maintaining the fluid level within the eye. It is significant for the pigment formation in the retina. Hence, the deficiency causes damage to the retina, which creates vision problems.
The deficiency of vitamin A affects the cornea and conjunctiva of the eye which gets dry. If left untreated, the dry eyes will lead to corneal damage and vision loss.
The sources of the vitamin A include meat, milk and other dairy products, eggs, liver and certain types of fish.
The vitamin C or the ascorbic acid is an essential vitamin for the healthy functioning of the eyes. It promotes healthy cells in the eye, which will withstand the degeneration caused due to aging such as age related macular degeneration or AMD. Additionally, the intake of sufficient amount of vitamin C will help to delay the onset of cataract by almost 10 years. Cataract and AMD are the contributing factors for blindness in people above 60 years. The intake of vitamin C is shown to delay the onset of these two diseases.
This is available in plenty in the fruits and vegetables. The sources of vitamin C include melon, citrus fruits, berries, guava and grapefruit.
Vitamin B2 or riboflavin is considered as an important factor for normal vision. The combination of vitamin B2 with other nutrients plays a significant role to prevent cataracts. Additionally, it helps to strengthen the cornea of the eye. The anti-oxidant nature of the vitamin nullifies the effect of free radicals, thereby prevents the damage of the cells of the eyes.
The sources of vitamin B2 are milk and dairy products, beef and lamb, almonds, eggs, oily fish such as mackerel, mushrooms, pork, seafood, sesame seeds and spinach.
It is a powerful antioxidant and a precursor to vitamin A which helps to slow down the age related degeneration of the cells of the eye. It fights the free radicals that cause damage to the cells of the eye. In our body, the beta-carotene is converted to retinol or vitamin A or retinoic acid, both of which are necessary for a healthy eye.
Dietary sources of beta-carotene includes, kale, carrots, sweet potato, etc.
Although, vitamin A is the primary concern for seekers of healthy vision and eye health, recent studies have shown that vitamin D has a crucial role in the healthy functioning of the eyes. It reduces the risk of eyes being affected by the macular degeneration that leads to vision loss if left uncared.
Exposure of the eyes to sunlight will help to harness the vitamin D from the sun’s rays. It is also available in eggs, certain fishes like tuna and salmon and cod liver oil.