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Top Nutritional Supplements for Maintaining Vision (1)

Top Nutritional Supplements for Maintaining Vision (1)

Vision is a crucial component of our overall health. The health of our eyes not only affects how we perceive the world but also influences our emotions and connections with others. Folk wisdom says, “The eyes are the windows to the soul,” but they also reflect our overall health and well-being.

Just like many other organs, the health of our eyes can be influenced by various factors related to lifestyle, diet, and physical activity. Healthy eating plays a vital role in preventing many eye conditions. Consuming a variety of fruits and vegetables with high levels of antioxidants is essential for eye health. 

A balanced diet has a beneficial impact on certain eye conditions, including:

  • Age-related macular degeneration
  • Glaucoma
  • Cataracts
  • Dry eyes

Antioxidants for Maintaining Vision

A diet rich in antioxidants has been proven to be important and beneficial for eye health. Oxidative stress is a primary factor contributing to the development of eye conditions and aging in general. Numerous studies show that antioxidants help prevent and minimize oxidative damage to eye cells and nerves.

Vitamin C and Vitamin E are antioxidants that can be useful in this regard. A 2012 study reveals that consuming fruits and vegetables high in Vitamin A and Vitamin C reduces the risk of developing glaucoma.

  • Vitamin C plays a crucial role in reducing eye pressure, a symptom of glaucoma. People with lower levels of Vitamin C have an increased risk of developing this condition. Recommended dosage: 500 – 2000 mg of Vitamin C per day.
  • Vitamin E has a synergistic effect when combined with other antioxidants. Hence, it is important to maintain a diverse diet that includes fruits and vegetables to ensure an optimal intake of various vitamins and minerals that support eye health.

Recommended Nutrients for Different Eye Conditions

Proper nutrition is crucial for maintaining eye health. Let’s explore specific aspects of various eye conditions and learn which nutrients can support vision and act as prevention against certain eye problems.

Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD)

Macular degeneration is an eye condition where the center of the retina deteriorates over time, potentially leading to vision loss. Studies show that a healthy diet rich in antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins is vital for preventing macular degeneration.

A study in 2005 reported that unhealthy and processed foods with inflammatory characteristics are associated with the development of macular degeneration. The condition is often linked to chronic inflammation and progressive eye damage. Other studies highlight that consuming foods high in cholesterol is associated with an increased risk of developing eye diseases.

  • Carotenoids are a group of red, yellow, and orange foods containing natural antioxidants. 
  • Beta-carotene, for example, is one of the popular carotenoids found in carrots and pumpkins, giving them their orange color. Beta-carotene helps maintain normal vision by effectively converting into Vitamin A, which plays an essential role in vision, skin health, immune system, and growth. Therefore, beta-carotene, when converted into Vitamin A, significantly contributes to maintaining eye and skin health while protecting cells from oxidative stress caused by free radicals.
  • Lutein and zeaxanthin are other carotenoids linked to eye health. They contribute to preventing the progression of age-related macular degeneration. Lutein and zeaxanthin are found in leafy green vegetables like cabbage and spinach. If you don’t regularly consume such foods, supplements with lutein and zeaxanthin can be a good option to acquire these essential nutrients.
  • Zinc is a mineral with significant antioxidant properties for the eyes. It is responsible for enzymatic reactions that maintain retinal health. Studies indicate that a zinc deficiency can lead to poor night vision. We can obtain optimal amounts of zinc by consuming red meat, poultry, beans, nuts, and seafood. It can also be taken as part of combined multivitamins or supplements.
  • Vitamin C is also important for the eyes, as low levels can increase the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. Foods high in Vitamin C are beneficial for vision and preventing various eye conditions. This nutrient can be taken through supplements or by consuming fruits and vegetables such as citrus fruits, peppers, broccoli, leafy greens, strawberries, kiwi, and others.
  • Blackcurrant is a phytonutrient rich in flavonoids, which are beneficial for vision and retinal health. Flavonoids are naturally found in wild berries, green tea, chocolate, red wine, and citrus fruits. Blackcurrant can also be consumed as a nutritional supplement.

By adhering to a healthy lifestyle and appropriate nutritional supplements, we can support eye health and prevent various eye conditions. Consume foods rich in carotenoids, lutein, zeaxanthin, zinc, Vitamin C, and blackcurrant. Other supplements that can be useful for eye health include ginkgo biloba, N-acetyl cysteine, and melatonin.


With age, some people may experience an increase in eye pressure, which can damage the optic nerve responsible for connecting the eye to the brain. This medical condition is called glaucoma. In advanced cases of glaucoma, patients may first lose their peripheral vision, and if left untreated, it can lead to permanent blindness.

The treatment of glaucoma typically involves prescription eye drops, and in some cases, surgical intervention may be necessary. Some alternative approaches in glaucoma therapy include the intake of flavonoids.

  • Flavonoids are natural compounds found in plants and possess potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective properties. They have the ability to protect the cells of the optic nerve from damage and improve eye health. Studies show that flavonoids can help reduce eye pressure and slow down the progression of glaucoma.
  • Antioxidants are beneficial in the prevention and treatment of glaucoma. A study in Acta Ophthalmology in 2018 shows that antioxidants increase blood flow to the retina, which is beneficial for individuals suffering from glaucoma. Additionally, a study in 2015 concludes that antioxidants can be helpful in improving vision in glaucoma patients, although they do not lower eye pressure.
  • Ginkgo biloba is a plant that has been studied in China, Germany, and France due to its content of flavonoid compounds. Numerous studies confirm that Ginkgo biloba enhances blood circulation in the optic nerve. The plant extract helps reduce oxidative stress, improve eye blood flow, and prevent the progression of glaucoma.

To be continued…

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