The worst foods for eye health are those high in salt, sugar, or fats.
What foods are good for your eyesight?
If you want to protect or even improve your eye health, you should consume vegetables and fruits. A whole food plant-based diet is rich in antioxidants. Your eyes need carotenoids and other antioxidants to function properly. For instance, carotenoids can filter the harmful blue light, protecting eyes.
Beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin are the most important carotenoids. Vegetables and fruits are carotenoid-rich foods. As a rule of thumb, colorful plants are the best sources of carotenoids.
Try to consume many colorful vegetables. Carotenoids are responsible for the color of vegetables. A colorful salad is a great way to boost your carotenoid intake. Spinach, broccoli, or even beet leaves are great options.
Additionally, you can add fruits or seeds. They are rich in nutrients and healthy fats. Moreover, flaxseeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and walnuts are good sources of omega-3s. Omega-3 fatty acids are so important for good eyesight. You should consume foods rich in omega-3s daily.
Last, but not least, consider consuming a teaspoon of moringa powder daily. Moringa powder is the best food supplement for good vision. Moringa is particularly rich in beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. Furthermore, it’s high in antioxidants.
The worst foods for eye health
But, if you really want to protect your eyes you should avoid certain foods, as well.
The worst foods for eye health are fried, sugary, salty, oily foods, or foods high in glycemic index.
Why fried foods are bad for eye health?
You should avoid fried foods.
Great amounts of vegetable oils aren’t good for your health. Vegetable oils are calorie-dense. This means that vegetable oils are low in nutrients, but high in calories.
Furthermore, a percentage of vegetable oils is transformed into trans-fat. A really dangerous for health type of dietary fat.
Moreover, we should avoid the consumption of great amounts of vegetable oils for many other reasons…
Omega-6s to omega-3s ratio
The human body needs omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids to function properly. Preferably, we should consume equal amounts of both types. A diet that contains up to 4 times more omega-6s than omega-3s in considered healthy.
In other worlds, the closer the omega-6s to omega-3s ratio is to 4:1, the better.
Unfortunately, most common vegetable oils are rich in omega-6 fatty acids. So, a standard Western diet is pretty high in omega-6s. This type of diet can provide 20 times more omega-6s than omega-3s.
When the omega-6s to omega-3s ratio is 20:1 many health problems can occur. That’s because excess consumption of omega-6s can cause chronic inflammation. Fatty liver disease, cardiovascular disease, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, and Alzheimer’s disease are some common diseases that chronic inflammation can cause (1).
Studies have confirmed that high consumption of omega-6s increases the change of age-related macular degeneration (2). Protect your eye health… Increase omega-3s, decrease omega-6s…
Hence, better avoid high consumption of vegetable oils, such as sunflower, as they are high in omega-6s. On the contrary, canola oil and flaxseed oil are high in omega-3s. They should be your first option. In any case, use them in moderation. They are pretty high in calories.
Protect your eye health avoiding foods high in trans-fats
Trans-fats are pretty dangerous. They can cause cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease (3).
Moreover, trans-fats have linked to high risk for age-related macular degeneration, as well.
As a rule of thumb, trans fats are present in every processed foods. Therefore, it’s good for your eye health to avoid processed foods.
Companies use trans fats for years in their products:
- products last longer,
- trans fats are cheap,
- they don’t get oily at room temperature.
Frying is bad for your eye health
Cooking with vegetable oils is bad for your health. It seems that heating of vegetable oils creates free radicals.
Free radicals can cause oxidative stress. Their present is extremely dangerous for the human body.
Researchers have proven that fat which is cooked at high temperatures can cause certain types of cancer (4).
You can fight free radicals. Firstly, avoid fried foods, altogether. Secondly, consume foods rich in antioxidants. Such foods are vegetables, herbs and fruits.
Healthy alternatives to fried food
On the other hand, if you like fried food, such as French fries, you can try to air-fry them.
This way you avoid all the excess vegetable oil.
Foods rich in sugar & foods with high glycemic index are bad for your vision
Avoid all foods that can cause a blood sugar spike.
Sugar and refined flour are the most common foods that can cause blood sugar spike (5).
Also, avoid sweets, sweetened drinks, energy drinks, sauces, dressings, and every other food that it’s rich in sugar.
Moreover, avoid baked goods. In most cases, refined flour is used. Prefer whole wheat flour.
Finally, fruits are good foods for your eye health, despite the sugar content. Fructose won’t spike blood sugar. Due to the fiber in fruits. Dietary fiber keeps blood sugar levels steady.
Extra salt may be bad for your eye health
Excess salt consumption can cause high blood pressure.
The blood vessels in your retina can be damaged, as they’re very sensitive to blood pressure.
So, avoid processed foods, as they tend to be high in salt. Always read the nutritional facts.
If you have high blood pressure you should limit the salt intake to the minimum.
Other common foods with high amounts of salt are all kinds of processed meats.
Remember… Salt is the number one risk of dying early, second only to not consuming fruits…
Other risk factors for eye health
Another risk factor for your eye health is smoking.
Do yourself a favor and stop this bad habit right now.
It can affect your good vision. Moreover, smoking is a high-risk factor for heart disease and stroke, as well.