The easiest way to improve your eyes is to change what you put into your body. We all have to eat, why not eat food that is going to improve your health? Fruits and vegetables in a raw food diet are most beneficial for a healthy life. There is an overabundance of information in the news and internet on what to eat and what to avoid, leaving the general public perplexed. This article will attempt to simplify the argument of what foods are essential for the health of your eyes.
We are going to break down the 10 foods that when consumed on a regular basis will have a positive impact on your health and vision.
The Importance of Antioxidants For Your Eye Health
According to Segen’s Medical dictionary oxidation is the combination of a molecule with oxygen, which increases the atom’s valence with the loss of a hydrogen ion or one or more electrons. Oxidation reactions commonly involve the combination with oxygen free radicals, and result in major organ damage that accumulates with time; they are implicated in age-related damage, degenerative phenomena and cancer, and may be ameliorated with antioxidants, including vitamin C, vitamin E, glutathione and superoxide dismutase.
Simply translated oxygen is absolutely essential to live but 1 to 2 percent of oxygen metabolized by your bodies cells will get damaged and turn into free radicals. The term free radicals denotes a missing critical molecule in a cell, the free radical will then try and bond with another healthy molecule to get the essentials it requires. When you leave a piece of fruit out for a few hours it will turn brown, this is an example of oxidation in progress.
Antioxidants found in fresh food replenish cells in the body allowing for optimal health and wellness.
Free radicals are all around us on a daily basis in our modern polluted world. Everything from cigarette smoke, car exhaust fumes to environmental toxins found in food and water all trigger free radicals in the human body. When your body is healthy you are able to resist free radicals and avoid disease.
Eat Organic Fresh Food
Pesticides and oxidative stress are linked together in forming free radicals. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates pesticide use in the US. According to the National Pesticide Information Center some of the active ingredients found in pesticides are the following: permethrin, naphthalene, pyrethrins, paradichlorobenzene, piperonyl butoxide, malathion, fipronil, deltamethrin, carbaryl and methoprene. This partial lists affects Canadian shoppers, produce at local supermarkets is often imported from the US due to Canada’s cold growing climate.
The first step towards improving your vision is eating food that does not trigger free radicals in the cells of your body. Organic food can be found at your local farmers market and corporate stores like Whole Foods Market, I myself am partial to supporting small independent farmers. Organic food must comply with USDA regulations and FDA labeling. There is currently no certified organic designation as per FDA law. Your best bet is still purchasing organic food when you can even though it may be more expensive.
Detox On An Organic Food Regimen
The road to improving your vision naturally starts with cleansing your body first. Doing a detox at least 3 times per year will pay off in dividends down the road. Getting rid of as many toxins as necessary and giving up vices like alcohol and cigarette smoking is a must. Drink as much alkaline water as possible to flush out toxins from your cells.
The Best 10 Foods For Your Eyes
The best foods high in antioxidants are fruits and vegetable that are dark or bright in colour. Next time you are out shopping compare an organic fruit or vegetable to a GMO fruit and vegetable that has been grown with pesticides, you can often see and definitely taste the difference. We will use the ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) unit of measurement created by the National Institute on Aging in the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The following values in the corresponding food groups are from the ORAC Rating Table as per 100 mg servings.
1. Eating a radish a day will keep the eye doctor away, radish is great for the eyes and high in vitamin A. Radish has an ORAC value of 2,184 units. The pungent smell of raw radish is the high sulfur content, sulfur is great at cleaning the blood. If you want clear sharp vision consider eating a raw radish every day.
2. Kale has an ORAC value of 1,770 units. Just 1 raw cup of kale contains more than 20 milligrams of lutein and zeaxanthin two nutrients that are essential for eye health. Kale reduces the occurrence of macular degeneration.
3. Spinach uncooked is the next best thing to kale with an ORAC value of 1,260 units. Spinach is a great substitute for lettuce in salad.
4. One of natures best disease fighters is garlic, proven to combat everything from the common cold to heart disease and more. Garlic has an ORAC value of 5,708 units. This pungent powerful vegetable should only be taken in moderation, too much can cause a subconjunctival hemorrhage or bloodshot eyes in the sclera.
5. Wheatgrass is a heavy nutrient rich vegetable that can be juiced and consumed if you have a wheatgrass juicer. I personally like the taste in its raw form, for those of you who don’t like the taste try adding some apples or blueberries to sweeten the mix. This natural source of vitamin A, E and B12 is a natural antioxidant. I recommend consuming wheatgrass as an addition not a substitute for eating vegetables. Wheatgrass has an ORAC value of 3,990 units.
6. Grapefruits taste great fresh squeezed and are high in antioxidants that protect you from free radicals. Red grapefruit has an ORAC value of 1,548 units.
7. Blueberries look and taste great with a high ORAC value of 6,566 units. This food is easily accessible and most people like the taste. Farmers markets are a great place to pick up fresh blueberries. This berry has been shown to slow the progression of cataracts one of the leading causes of vision loss. Anthocyanins found in blueberries may be great for treating this debilitating disease.
8.Goji berries can be found at most health food stores and your local Whole Foods Market. You can purchase them freeze dried and eat them like a snack instead of eating chocolate bars or chips. This berry grows in China, Mongolia and the Tibetan Himalayas. The goji berry has an ORAC rating of 25,300 units and it tastes great too.
9. The farm grown strawberry is popular and easily recognizable to the general public. Strawberries make the list for their versatility, they grow virtually anywhere and are a great crop to plant in your garden. Strawberries have a value of 1,540 units.
10. And the winner goes to the acai berry for the highest ORAC value in the fruit family with a score of 18,500 units. The acai berry a deep red and purplish fruit comes from the acai palm tree found in Central and South America. Many health conscious people have proclaimed this fruit as a superfood. The acai berry tastes great and is high in antioxidants.
These are just some of nature’s antioxidant foods that are great for improving and maintaining eye health. For a more permanent solution for refractive problems, consider attending an information session on laser eye surgery. Organic grown produce without the interference of pollutants will put you on the road to health and wellness. For best results the food in this article should be eaten RAW, cooked food depletes the minerals, vitamins and potency of any food. Consider adopting a raw food diet temporarily or long term for optimum results.