Healthy Living 2017-09-07 4,775 8

Eyes are windows to the soul; the need to take good care of them cannot be overemphasized. Most people go to the gym, abstain from chocolate cake and drink gallons of water, all in the name of good health. However, only a few take time to engage in simple exercises to maintain good vision and keep the eyes healthy. Here are a few tips for helping your eyes stay in good condition.

Healthy Eating for Healthy Vision:
Like every major organ in the body, the eyes need certain foods to help them function better and more effectively. Protecting your eyes starts on your plate. Nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamins A, C and E help ward off age-related vision problems like macular degeneration and cataracts. Foods that are rich sources of the nutrients mentioned above include vegetables (broccoli, spinach, Brussels sprouts and collards), oily fish (salmon, tuna and sardines), citrus fruits (oranges, grapefruit, lemon and tangerine) and other non-meat protein sources like eggs, nuts and beans. Eating a well-balanced diet also helps you maintain a healthy weight, which makes you less likely to get obesity-related diseases such as type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adults.

Select Appropriate Eyewear:
Wear sunglasses and lenses that protect against ultraviolet (UV) rays; insist on using polarized lenses. Polarized lenses also reduce glare from other vehicles and surrounding buildings when driving. Prolonged exposure to UV rays can harm eyesight; protection in youth can help prevent loss of eyesight in later years. It is also recommended that when using contact lenses, you choose brands that offer UV protection. Exposure to UV rays has been linked to cataracts and macular degeneration which are harmful conditions for the eyes. If you use a computer on a regular basis, make sure your glasses or contact lenses prescription is up-to-date and adequate for computer use. You should wear safety goggles when necessary at home, school, work sites, etc. It is also important to observe use and maintenance guidelines provided by manufacturers of your eyewear.

Spend Less Time on the Computer:
Looking at the computer screen for too long may cause eye strain, blurry vision and dry eyes. People blink less when they're looking at a screen, causing drier eyes. Make a conscious effort to blink every 30 seconds when you're sitting down and looking at your computer screen to combat dry eyes. The glare from computer screens also causes muscle fatigue in the eyes, either from being too bright or too dark.

Beware of Dim or Bright Light:
Do not read or perform any visually intense activity in dim light. Reading in dim light can cause eye strain. If your eyes feel tired, stop for a while and take a break. Avoid looking at bright lights directly. Never focus your eyes on the sun directly, as it can damage your eyes.

Exercise Your Eyes:
Be sure to exercise and relax your eyes. Practice seeing objects from far and nearby, focusing on objects that are near to you, then objects that are far away. Repeat this process multiple times. Every 20 minutes, rest your eyes by looking 20 feet away for 20 seconds. At least every two hours, get up and take a 15-minute break.


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