salmon

We’ve all heard that eating carrots will improve our vision. They may not give us super night vision, but eating them can help keep our eyes healthy.

What we choose to eat is one of the most important variables to our health. It affects our weight, our energy levels, our risk of many types of disease—the list goes on and on. Today, the item on that list we’re most interested in is how diet affects eye health.

Important Building Blocks Of Eye Health

Our eyes need certain nutrients, vitamins, and minerals to maintain peak functionality, so the foods we eat can make a big difference to our vision, especially in the long term.

Lutein & Zeaxanthin

Studies have linked these two nutrients to a reduced risk of chronic eye diseases such as age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. The best sources of them in our diet are eggs and leafy greens.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are crucial for brain function and a strong immune system, and research has shown that they play an important role in visual development and retinal function. The top source of omega-3 fatty acids is fish, although they are also present in many other foods.

Vitamins C and E

Ascorbic acid (vitamin C) is an antioxidant that may lower the risk of developing cataracts and slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration and loss of visual acuity. Citrus fruits are great sources of vitamin C, but most other fruits and vegetables also contain it. Vitamin E is another antioxidant. It protects our eyes from dangerous molecules called “free radicals” that disrupt healthy tissue. Nuts and sweet potatoes are great sources.

Vitamin A and Zinc

The mineral zinc is an important “helper molecule” for all kinds of healthy processes in our bodies, including transporting vitamin A from the liver to the retina. No matter how many carrots we eat, the vitamin A is useless without zinc. Oysters have by far the most zincper serving of any food, but it’s also present in other meatsbeans, and nuts.

Vitamin A helps our eyes convert light into brainwaves and is integral to the structure of the cornea (the clear structure at the front of the eye). Vitamin A deficiency leads to blindness in between a quarter and half a million children every year.

So how do we get vitamin A? By eating foods with beta-carotene, vitamin A’s key ingredient. That’s where carrots come in, but it’s present in other yellow, orange, and leafy green fruits and vegetables. It’s actually what gives them their color!

To learn a bit more about Vitamin A and how carrots affect our vision, watch the video below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpYnx3RUuzs


Eye-Healthy Recipes

Knowing what foods are healthy for your eyes is one thing, but finding great recipes is another! Try this baby carrot soup for a delicious way to get that much needed Vitamin A, or this roasted wild salmon and dill for your daily dose of omega-3 fatty acids. Do you have any additional eye-healthy recipes to share? Let us know in the comments below!

Diet Is Only One Piece Of The Puzzle

Eating all the right foods to promote healthy eyes is certainly a great step, but it’s not a replacement for regular eye exams. Problems unrelated to nutrition can still occur, and early detection is crucial for dealing with those problems. If it’s been a while since your last eye exam, we’d love to see you!

Thank you for being part of our practice family!

Top image by Flickr user Ján Sokoly used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

Please note the Vision Source eclipse glasses sold in our office on the afternoon of Tuesday, Aug 1 have been recalled.  These are black with the Vision Source logo on the front.  As of time of publishing this blog entry, only 5 pairs remain unaccounted for.

Vision Source eclipse glasses

 

  

 

  

 

 

The remaining pairs of eclipse glasses sold from our office, which may look like any of the designs below, are not affected by this recall.  These are manufactured by Rainbow Symphony and American Paper Optics, both of which are NASA-approved vendors.  

20170807 174634

 

 

TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE TO TAKE PLACE AUGUST 21, 2017

Here in Mt. Juliet, we are fortunate in that we will get to experience a total solar eclipse!

Did you know that in our solar system, the Earth is the only planet that experiences a total solar eclipse?  So, don't make plans to go planet hopping anytime soon.  ;)  This will be the first total solar eclipse in the continental US in 38 years.   Nashville is the only major city in the path of totality, and we should experience a little more than 2 minutes of it.  We'll be getting lots of visitors.

To safely view the eclipse, you should wear certified eclipse glasses.  Beware- there are knock-offs in circulation.  Sunglasses, no matter how awesome, are not enough protection against damaging rays of the sun. You will need to wear these sunglasses for all phases of the eclipse except the totality phase, when the sun is completely blocked. 

If you're driving, please pull off the road to a safe viewing area (not the shoulder... a parking lot would be a better choice).  And please, don't wear your eclipse glasses while driving.  They are extremely dark and we hope this goes without saying, but they're not safe for that.

You will need to have your eclipse glasses on again before the sun starts peeking through.  Make sure you aid small children.

Eye safety is no joke!  The sun can cause some serious and permanent damage to the eyes and an eclipse is no exception.  In fact, it's almost worse because you're staring at the sun on purpose.

What happens if it's cloudy or raining?  Well, it will put a damper on things, but we will still experience some cool stuff like darkening and temperature dropping.  So everyone cross your fingers for sun!

 

 

Fossil is often revered for their stunning, timeless watches. But did you know they also craft stunning eyewear as well?

Fossil Makes More Than Great Watches

Fossil first introduced their watches in 1985, offering vintage designs with a modern twist. Ten years later, they brought this same aesthetic to their new line of sunglasses. Fossil has maintained that same commitment to style and function over the years and we are proud to offer Fossil’s newest line of frames and sunglasses in our practice.

Fossil eyewear

Discover The Advantages Of Buying From Our Practice

When you choose our office for your eyewear, you get the benefit of qualified, experienced staff who can help you select the best frame for your face shape, and your prescription!  We offer an exclusive 2-year warranty on our frames, and a prescription accuracy guarantee.  Glasses purchased in our office also come with free adjustments, so you don't have to worry if you accidentally fall asleep in them (or sit on them) and they get a little bent out of shape!  Our patients love the look and quality of these frames!

Come Explore Our Collection

With fun, vintage throwbacks and modern appeal, Fossil’s eyewear is sure to suit just about anyone’s style and personality. If you’re in need of a new pair of frames or sunglasses, come to our practice and explore our collection of Fossil eyewear. We know you’ll find the right pair for you!

Thank you for choosing our practice!

Image by Fossil used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

8b6a8ba1 338f 4cfe 86ea c946dd7d7053Did you know that women are more at risk than men for almost all age-related vision problems?

If you didn’t, you aren’t alone. In fact, 91 percent of women in the United States don’t know they are more at risk for eye disease and permanent vision loss than their male counterparts. This April, Women’s Eye Health and Safety Month, we’d like to change that.

Here Are The Facts

The truth is, two-thirds of blindness and other visual impairments worldwide occur in women. They are more prone to almost all eye diseases including cataracts, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), diabetic retinopathy and dry eye disease.

While there could be several factors contributing to these statistics, there are two main reasons women have vision-related problems more prevalently than men. The first is simply that, on average, women live longer than men. The second reason is that the hormonal changes women experience throughout their lives due to pregnancy and menopause can increase their risk for eye disease.

Be Aware Of Pregnancy-related Vision Problems

Speaking of pregnancy, expectant mothers should be aware of the issues they may experience with their vision during those special nine months. Because of the changes your body goes through, you may experience blurry vision and dry eye during pregnancy. Don’t worry, it can go away after your baby is born. If you have any questions or concerns, give us a call or come in to see us.

More serious vision disturbances may be a sign of preeclampsia, such as temporary loss of vision, light sensitivity, double vision, or seeing spots or flashing lights. If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.  Even if your blood pressure measures in the normal range, we recommend following up with your eye care professional to rule out any eye-related causes for these vision disturbances including retinal detachments.

Women who have diabetes and are pregnant can experience a rapid onset or worsening of diabetic retinopathy. If you are diabetic and planning to conceive, talk to your doctor and eye care provider and get dilated eye exams throughout your pregnancy as recommended.

Take Your Vision Health Into Your Own Hands

It’s important to remember that many instances of vision impairment are preventable with proper education and care! Here are a few important steps you can take to protect your vision health:

  • Get regular dilated eye exams as recommended by your eye doctor, typically every year
  • Make sure you and your optometrist are aware of your family’s history of eye disease
  • Eat a nutritious, well-balanced diet
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Get plenty of exercise and maintain a healthy weight
  • Don’t smoke, and limit your exposure to secondhand smoke
  • Protect your eyes from UV damage by wearing sunglasses when outside

Remember, many eye diseases don’t present noticeable symptoms until they become quite advanced. That’s why we want to emphasize more than ever how important regular eye examinations by your optometrist are.

Help Us Raise Awareness

Help us spread the word about women’s eye health by sharing this post with the women in your life! Together, we can help save people’s sight and work toward a lifetime of healthy vision for the people we love.

We’re grateful for the amazing women in our lives. Let’s help them continue to see and feel their best!

Top image by Flickr user Lachlan Hardy used under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 4.0 license. Image cropped and modified from original.

The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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