The importance of healthy eating in old age cannot be rejected. If the importance of a healthy diet is ignored, it can drastically deteriorate the health of seniors and of several physical health complications, vision problems are quite common among the elderly.
Some of the common eye problems in the elderly include age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, and dry eye while the critical eye problems in the elderly include diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and retinal detachment.
If you are an adult child who wants to provide the best eye care at home for the elderly, you need to learn about the nutrients for eyesight improvement.
List of the top 10 foods to improve eyesight
Citrus Fruits and Berries
Being an excellent source of Vitamin C, A, and flavonoids that act as potent antioxidants, citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, sweet limes, and grapefruits along with different types of berries have found to be highly effective in promoting healthy vision in seniors.
These not only reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration but also protect eyesight. So, make sure you include citrus fruits and berries on the list of foods to improve the eyesight of the elderly.
The potency of spinach cannot be undermined when it comes to deciding one of the best foods for eye health. There are several pieces of evidence that spinach is highly effective in minimising the risk of developing macular degeneration and cataracts, which are two of the most common problems experienced by seniors after a point.
With the presence of powerful antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin, spinach is indeed the best food for eyes that can help the elderly have good eyesight for a long time to come.
The miniature tree, broccoli, despite being quite a good food for eyesight improvement, is the most neglected vegetable. This eye-boosting super veggie is rich in Vitamin C, beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin. These nutrients not only help ward off the causes of cataract but also protect the eyes from high-energy light waves that come from sunlight and are also emitted by the bright screens of smartphones and tablets. Broccoli makes the eye lenses stronger, improves the eyesight, and thus gives you a strong reason to serve it to the elderly.
Being a great source of lutein and Vitamin A, carrots have always been considered an effective food choice for good eyesight. Not only do they protect the eyes but also improve blurred vision. And the best thing about carrots is that they taste sweet and are easy to consume as they are extremely versatile. You can include carrots in the routine of the elderly as an afternoon or evening snack, in salads, soups, or juice.
Carrots are one of the highly recommended food options to improve eyesight fast if the person has cataracts. In case you have an elder person, who has recently undergone cataract surgery, you can seek professional help for him/her to get the best senior care at home.
Although onions are blamed for making people cry, you may find it surprising to know that they are one of the effective options for foods to improve eyesight. Onions are rich in sulphur, which is crucial for the production of glutathione, a sulphur-containing protein that makes the lens of the eyes stronger and more durable. And since onions are easiest to consume and in fact are included in most dishes, you can even add them in salads to help the elderly get a bit extra dose.
Items Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Many studies have shown convincing outcomes on the effectiveness of omega-3 fatty acids in protecting eyes from dry eye syndrome, macular degeneration, and cataracts in seniors. The good thing is that there is no dearth of options for foods to improve eyesight as far as omega-3 fatty acids are concerned. You have choices like almonds, pistachios, peanuts, and walnuts. Besides, if the elder loves having seafood, you can even consider salmon provided it is well-cooked.
Eggs are a great source of sulphur, amino acids, cysteine, lutein, and Vitamin A and thus are counted as an amazing food option for better eyesight. Besides being a great source of protein, the nutrients present in eggs are eye-boosting that not only offer protection against dryness and night blindness but also improves overall eye health and function. So, eggs being an effective food to increase eyesight must be on your list of food items that you can serve to the elderly.
Whole grains that are low on the glycaemic index (GI) are pretty good options for foods for eye health as these not only minimise the risk of macular degeneration but also help in maintaining a good vision for long. Always look for healthier alternatives. You can switch from refined carbs to complex carbs like quinoa, barley, whole oats, and whole-wheat pasta and breads. Since whole grains are a rich source of zinc, niacin, and vitamin E, they are the best food for eyesight improvement.
Legumes are the foods for eye power. Green gram, red lentils, kidney beans, blacked-eye peas, chickpeas, and pigeon peas among several others are a powerhouse of bioflavonoids and zinc that not only minimises the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts but also protect the retina. The benefits of legumes are not just restricted to eye health only, they are an excellent source of plant-based protein. So, make sure to include a bowl of legume to allow the elderly to reap its benefits.
According to some studies, dark chocolate is now among the best food options for eye vision. Being a great source of flavonoids, dark chocolates may improve visual acuity and contrast sensitivity. They improve the vision by boosting the blood supply to the eyes. However, whenever you get dark chocolates for the seniors, make sure it is completely pure.
So, these are the top 10 foods to improve eyesight. However, the list is indicative to give you a direction. For better clarity on the portion size and items to avoid (in case the elderly is allergic to any food item), get in touch with your health professional and follow their advice.
If you happen to need any assistance, we have a plethora of elder health care services that you can avail of. Our sole objective is to provide elders with all the help and care they need and ensure that they have a great quality of life. For us, it is always #EldersFirst