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I've been investigating the benefit of slight dietary adjustments to improve and maintain the health of my eyes and thought others might be interested...it's amazing how we take for granted the interface between photons and our brain.

Many foods are known to be beneficial for good (and continuing) eye health but I wonder how many of us don't give this subject much consideration...?

Clarity of vision is so critical to gazing through small pieces of glass, sometimes for hours, at objects which are often at distances so far away they are measured in light years.

I have been reading about this for a while and found that these foods are particularly recommended for encouraging healthy, clear vision:

Tomatoes, Carrots (naturally), Kale, Spinach, Sweet Potatoes, Avocado, Sweetcorn, Blackberries (or any dark-coloured berries), Eggs, Nuts, Peppers (capsicums or the red, green, yellow types) and Oranges.

Also extremely helpful is plenty of fresh water to drink - hydration is critical for so much of the body to function at its best.

I wonder if others have their own ideas on how to maintain the critical clarity of vision necessary for peering into the great yonder or foods they think may help or even foods to avoid...?

 

“The health of the eye seems to demand a horizon. We are never tired, so long as we can see far enough.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for posting. Food for thought (or in this case eyes!). :) 

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Posted (edited)

Interesting, though not sure any foodstuff is going to repair my eyes!

The one thing you mention that I'm not eating are those sweet tatties! everything else is on my diet, but for the life of me, Advacodo's! Whats that all about?
They arrived on my diet  due to the hype! flavoursome, creamy, RUBBISH.......their awful, but so beneficial. Then I dusted one with Salt & Pepper, which has made them palatable, in-fact enjoyable, otherwise I could easily have left them out.

True about the water, no-one I doubt, drinks enough in their daily routine, considering what were really made of.

Don't forget the humble egg! another essential.

Edited by Charic
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A good post. There's not an item on the list that I don't eat so off to a good start. Like Charic I'm not that mad keen on Avocados but chopped into a mixed salad they're OK. Opticians later this week so I'll find out how I'm doing!

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I've been mostly vegan/veggie most of my adult life (since I was ~34-5 but not exclusively veggie these days as I eat some fish or mussels sometimes). But I still have cataracts :( Not too bad at the moment - glare is a problem and I can't see in the shade - but they will only ever get worse. Whether I'll be able to have them seen to on the NHS remains to be seen. It'll probably have to wait until I'm near blind.

Louise

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I'm not really sure where to stand on the issue of how much water to drink.  Much of the research that seems to have become "common knowledge" even amongst healthcare professionals was apparently funded by companies in the business of selling bottled water so should probably be taken with a considerable pinch of salt.

There are some figures for roughly how much water an adult needs each day though it can vary significantly, but they're not specific to drinking.  It's total water intake.  Given that there can be quite a large amount of water in food, what is required in addition to that may not be as much as people think.

For the time being I have adopted the approach that I'll drink as much as I feel like drinking and if that isn't sufficient my body will let me know by telling me I'm thirsty.

(As an aside, it's common to hear coaches telling swimmers to keep drinking when they're training, but I've found it's rare for me to be thirsty when I'm swimming.  I suspect that's because swimmers don't actually sweat much, water being so good at conducting heat away from the body, and because one of the waste products of releasing energy in the muscles is water, which finds its way back into the bloodstream and can be made available to other processes that need it.)

James

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Interesting stuff :smiley:

I find that the best thing to help the eye perform well at the scope is ...... practice.

The more I observe for and the longer I observe particular objects for, the better my eye becomes at teasing the detail from them.

Maybe diet can help as well but time spent observing really does seem to ultimately deliver better results :smiley:

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The colour of one's pee is supposed to be a good guide to whether or not you're dehydrated ;)

Louise

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Mice are good. 
Owls see well at night 
and they eat lots of mice. 
🤪

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Posted (edited)

For sure don't smoke or be around smokers, it is one of the factor of AMD!

https://www.riteaid.com/shop/bausch-lomb-preservision-eye-vitamin-mineral-supplement-areds-2-formula-soft-gels-120-soft-gels-8017354?ra_group=gPLA30pct16&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI4ujG7fje3AIVFcZkCh2ebwHiEAQYASABEgIFlvD_BwE

Wear sunglasses, keep weight off and exercise. (did all that)

You can check very simply if you have the beginning of AMD, it is of course associated with aging it is also  genetic!

https://www.aao.org/eye-health/tips-prevention/facts-about-amsler-grid-daily-vision-test

Don't wish it on anyone, unfortunately I suffer from advanced AMD, where I can't bicycle 150kms a week since last year, drive and very hard to read! The stage of my condition is known as "geographic atrophy"--great and promising results from stem cell research in your country and the U.S.
Will always retain my peripheral vision so will be able to enjoy astronomy by using the method of averted vision.
Unfortunately I carry one of the two genes that trigger AMD.

Edited by VNA
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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, VNA said:

You can check very simply if you have the beginning of AMD, it is of course associated with aging it is also genetic! https://www.aao.org/eye-health/tips-prevention/facts-about-amsler-grid-daily-vision-test

Didn't recognise "AMD" (as Macular Degeneration). But my maternal grandfather ended up
with peripheral vision only and Mum started to lose large chunks of sight in her early 60's... 😪
No GP, but I wondered if there was undiagnosed Type II diabetes etc. We get a bit fatter! lol

No sign here as yet? But I am NEGLECTFUL (always have been) of Eye Tests / Examinations! 
But I am now a convert to modern / commercial eye tests. My budget varifocal glasses work
just as well as past, more expensive, private opticians. Plus you do get the retinal scans etc. 😎

That said,  I have the "beginnings" of Cataracts. With age, my eyes become uncomfortable. 
Exacerbated by the GAS Fires / PC Screens.  Wind causes Floods of Tears! The Optometrist
discovered my eyes were very DRY, so I now use an "Artificial Tear" product to advantage... 🙂

I don't think I will be writing any reports on Optical Tests though! Was checking out some
of my small ED refractors and spotted *horrible* "lens flare" (whatever). 😱 
I BLINKED a few times and things were pretty much OK... 😺

Edited by Macavity

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10 hours ago, Thalestris24 said:

I've been mostly vegan/veggie most of my adult life (since I was ~34-5 but not exclusively veggie these days as I eat some fish or mussels sometimes). But I still have cataracts :( Not too bad at the moment - glare is a problem and I can't see in the shade - but they will only ever get worse. Whether I'll be able to have them seen to on the NHS remains to be seen. It'll probably have to wait until I'm near blind.

Louise

Forgot to mention that I've suffered from floaters and flashes since around March last year. The floaters have become worse since March of this year and are very annoying! I'm constantly aware of them :(

Louise

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1 hour ago, Thalestris24 said:

Forgot to mention that I've suffered from floaters and flashes since around March last year. The floaters have become worse since March of this year and are very annoying! I'm constantly aware of them :(

Louise

I suffer from floaters so can sympathise.

I often have to move my eye to get a better view.

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Posted (edited)

Apparently, avocados have good levels of vitamins B6, C and E which are all beneficial for healthy eyes - I like them with prawns and marie rose sauce - better as a savoury dish I reckon. I sometimes eat sweet potatoes in place of regular spuds - either mashed or in chunks roasted.

Too much computer use can be detrimental - take plenty of breaks from the screen and smoking should be minimised if it can't be stopped.

Floaters - there is a lot of information on improving the situation with floaters (and cataracts) naturally by dietary adjustments - well worth a search online.

A few other beneficial foods are salmon, mackerel, herring & sardines; Vitamin C in general and Chromium & Zinc (found in oysters among other things).

Pee colour is a good indicator of general intake level of fluids - a straw colour seems to be what to aim for (ahem).

Good to see (!) others taking an interest in this critical part of our astronomical endeavours.

 

 

Edited by Saturnalia

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22 minutes ago, Saturnalia said:

I sometimes eat sweet potatoes in place of regular spuds

Sometimes I grate peeled sweet potatoes and cook them in with other veg ingredients, some herbs and light spices, yum.

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Posted (edited)

The fad for constantly drinking water started maybe 20 years ago? Used to be people in the office made themselves a cup of tea a few times a day, then suddenly the younger staff were trotting to and from the water cooler filling up large plastic bottles like they were on a trek through the Sahara. Now everyone under the age of 35 seems incapable of making it from home to the office unless they are carrying a special drink container with half a lemon floating in it.

Don't get me wrong, on an exceptionally hot day stuck on the bus/train/tube, it is sensible to have a drink handy in case of delays or breakdowns. But as a matter of course? Who can't make a commute of an hour or two without guzzling a litre of water, unless they have a specific medical condition?

Evolution developed this amazing warning system to tell you when you need to drink, called 'thirst' and dreadfully old fashioned as it may be, I prefer to rely on it rather than half-baked nonsense purporting to be 'scientific advice'.

Same goes for dieatary 'advice' to eat this, avoid that in order to improve your skin, eyesight, chances of not getting cancer, etc. Practically none of it comes from properly interpreted scientific/medical research. Used to be that a journalist would sieze on some tenous finding in a research paper and hail it as the cure for cancer to fill that day's column inches. These days the cost of publishing on the web is close to zero, so anyone trying to sell your eyeballs to advertisers doesn't need any editorial integrity, they can just make up whatever guff they like and wait for the gullible to spread the word via the miracle of social media.

I don't doubt the benefits of a balanced diet, but the idea of eating specific foods to achieve very specific outcomes is just not supported by the evidence, unless perhaps by using poisoned mushrooms in order to speed up the acquisition of one's inheritance!

Edited by IanL
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Sunglasses will help reduce the yellowing of the cornea... it is thought that average colour vision changes from fluorescent illuminated to old incandescent illuminated with age (illuminant D65 to illuminant A for those who understand). Floaters... I am getting more with time, I have an “old faithful” bird shaped one in my right eye.  

Avoid beetroot, thought I was peeing blood once! I’d err on the side of drinking too much, keeps “one motions” working nicely.

PEter

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How about supplements. Is there anything quick an easy one can take to maintain or improve eye health?

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Interesting information, at the very least eating those foods would be beneficial to your general health, even if not conclusively good for eye. It's so hard to prove whether these foods would have the desired improvement, perhaps someone will try some astronomical tests before and six months after including the foods in the diet. Perhaps trying to split some challenging doubles and spot some faint DSOs before and after. There would have to be a large enough sample over a large number of days to make it valid, and as per John's point, one's observing skills might have improved after six months anyway! I'll leave to someone else for now. :)

As for drinking water, I find if I am getting tired at work, a glass of water definitely perks me up and improves my clarity of thought, but I agree that there is a huge amount of hype around drinking water.

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Floaters become less apparent when using a binoviewer, and atmospheric turbulance also seems to become less of a problem too. I'm not sure about specific foods - I tend to eat nearly everything that's put in front of me. The advice about not smoking is definitely sound, as the toxins and carcinogens they contain harm every cell of the body including the eyes.

John's advice is spot on when he says "time spent observing delivers results." Like every other part of the body the eyes need to be exercised. 

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Vitamin A which is rally a catch all for related retinol, carotene and loads related compounds are easily converted between the different types by the body and are essential to night vision as well as being a good route to an artificial tan (we've all seen the orange ladies...)

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