Looking Dull and Gray
Cataracts are an eye disease where the natural lens used to focus light loses clarity. As a result, vision becomes blurry and often dull and gray. Over time, the condition can lead to complete blindness in one or both eyes if left to worsen.
We’re not getting any younger
The most common factor in the formation of cataracts is age. Individuals reaching the 40 mark often start to notice changes in vision as the lens hardens. Cataracts usually begin forming somewhere after this point but can take several years to mature. There’s no way to reverse cataract growth, but there are some techniques to slow things down.
You are what you eat
The human body benefits significantly from vitamins and minerals found in healthy foods, and the eye is no exception. The following nutrients can help protect your eyes.
Vitamin C is located in areas of the eye that provide nutrition and work to keep tissue healthy. Adding more vitamin C to a diet boosts the levels in the eye. This nutrient can be found in citrus fruits, bell peppers, potatoes, greens such as kale and broccoli, and more.
Vitamin E works to shield areas of the eye from harmful chemicals that can damage healthy tissue. Reinforcing this antioxidant is a great way to keep parts of the eye safe. Look to nuts, oils, seeds, and leafy greens for this nutrient.
Lutein and zeaxanthin help protect eyes from ultraviolet rays that can damage tissue. In addition to protection from cataracts, these nutrients are known to safeguard the eye from other ocular diseases as well. Green vegetables, corn, grapes, and egg yolks contain these two antioxidants.
Slap on some shades
The Sun’s UV rays can increase the likelihood of cataract growth by damaging protein in the lens. Limiting time outside or wearing sunglasses can cut down adverse effects substantially. When picking out sunglasses, look for a pair that blocks out at least 99% of UVA and UVB. The best options also deflect 75% to 90% visible light and fit the face well.
Stay away from smoking and excess alcohol
Both smoking and alcohol consumption can increase cataract formation in the eye. These products cause free radicals to form that damage the eye. Smoking can also destroy the healthy vitamins and minerals found in food. Amounts of alcohol larger than two standard-sized drinks can lead to cataract growth as well.
Blood doesn’t need to be so sweet
An elevated blood sugar level can also play a significant part in cataract formation. As blood sugar rises, the lens swells and can become damaged. Sugar converted into sorbitol can collect in the lens, causing further issues.
Steroids can have repercussions
Prolonged steroid eye drop use can lead to faster cataract formation in the affected eye. These steroids may be necessary for another eye condition, so schedule regular visits with an ophthalmologist to keep cataracts in check.
It will help what ails you
Along with steroid eye drops, hundreds of other medications have side effects potentially leading to cataract growth. Healthcare specialists prescribe drugs for a reason, though. Under no circumstance should anyone stop taking medications without the consent of a doctor.
Surgery is the only way
While the above methods may slow cataract formation, there is no way to stop growth completely. At this time, only a surgical procedure can remove a cataractous lens and restore clear vision. Individuals having difficulty seeing once clear objects should see a physician for a careful diagnosis.