As people age, they experience an increased risk of macular degeneration. The disease can lead to a decrease in visual sharpness. It is the leading cause of vision loss in Americans over the age of 60, as well as the leading cause of blindness in older adults. In my time as an optometrist at Lange Eye Care & Associates, I have studied how nutritional choices can greatly affect vision, and I strongly believe that making nutritional and lifestyle changes can slow or prevent age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Make the following nutritional changes to decrease your chances of AMD-related vision loss.
1. Eat lightly steamed dark green leafy vegetables like spinach. Light cooking makes the nutrients in the greens available. These types of vegetables contain lutein, which may help slow AMD.
2. Add orange bell peppers into your diet, which contain Zeaxanthin. This nutrient, when combined with lutein, may filter blue light, leading to improved macular health. Eat the peppers raw or lightly cooked to preserve nutrients.
3. Decrease your intake of meats containing high levels of saturated fats, such as beef and pork. Instead, eat white meat poultry, cold-water fish, and wild-caught salmon. If you do eat beef, opt for grass-fed beef instead of the traditional grain-fed beef you find at most grocery stores.
4. Increase intake of Omega-3 fats in order to decrease inflammation and balance the ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 fats in your diet. Fortifeye brand Super Omega-3 fish oil contains the natural triglyceride form of Omega-3 fats best for eye health.
5. Take the Fortifeye Complete Macular Defense Eye Vitamin (www.fortifeye.com), which fights oxidative damage associated with free radicals and provides other nutrients to protect macular health.