Food for Your Eyes

Author: Myron Yau, Nutritionist at HKBioTek

Eyes are the ‘Window of the Soul’ in human beings. To perceive every thing on the earth, seeing them by eyes is always the best way to appreciate them. As we all know how important eyes are to us, how can we protect our ‘A-pair-in-a-lifetime’ the best?

 

During work and entertainment in our daily lives, it is extremely common for us to involve electric display screen, including televisions, computers and smart phone. Prolonged focus on the screens is well known to be harmful to our eyes. Hence, every 15-20 minutes watching the screens is generally recommended to be followed by a 5 minutes break for your eyes.

 

However, apart from regular break for your eyes, proper diet is also a way to protect our eyes.

 

Vitamin A is commonly known to benefit our eyes. After years of researches, lacks of vitamin A in our bodies are found to decrease vision sensitivity to light or even cause night blindness. Prolonged exposures to screens of eyes exhaust vitamin A storage in the bodies quickly. That is why these people have to eat more vitamin-A-rich foods, including majority of the orange-yellow vegetables and fruits, for examples, red and yellow bell pepper, carrot, spinach, cow milk, yogurt, pumpkin, cantaloupe, fish liver oil and animal livers.

 

Lycopene in tomatoes is a very strong antioxidant. According to scientific researches, lycopene is able to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and prostate cancer. Moreover, elderly over age of 100 is generally higher in lycopene level in their blood, which may indicate its possible role in longevity. In fact, lycopene can be related to age-related macular degeneration and cataract by decreasing risks of both of them. Other tomatoes, watermelon, grapefruit and guava also contain considerable amount of lycopene but not as rich as in tomatoes.

 

Nowadays, there are more and more discussions about how beneficial anthocyanin is to our eyes, which create more and more popular eye-health products containing anthocyanin. Indeed, the current scientific evidences reveal that anthocyanin can improve the vision acuity to colors and general vision. Yet all the studies are small-scaled studies and the dosages used are much higher than the quantities that we can obtain from our diets. Therefore, no firm conclusion can be drawn at this moment. However, more anthocyanin-rich fruits are still healthy to us, which include fruits that are blue or purple in colors (blueberry, eggplant, grape, cherry, purple sweet potato, etc.)