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The Best Foods to Eat When You Have Glaucoma

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a disease that causes the damage of the optic nerve resulting in loss of vision. It hinders the bridge that connects the eyes to the brain. To read more about it, you can check out this blog post

Researchers haven't been able to find early causes or the symptoms related to the disease. Doctors use medication to reducing the pressure on the eyes, but there is currently no cure for it. In addition to medication, having a proper diet can also help keep it under control.

For people already suffering from glaucoma, adopting a healthy lifestyle is vital. This healthy lifestyle includes regular exercise and a nutritious diet. A nutritious diet is also important for reducing the risk of getting glaucoma.

As you can imagine, our focus should always be to strengthen the vision. Food rich with carotenoids, antioxidants, Vitamin A and D, zinc and omega fatty acids can contribute to the cause. 

Of course, no food will serve as a magic pill to cure glaucoma or make you immune to it. But these foods can reduce the risk of getting it or make it easier to live with it!

Eco-Friendly and Guilt-Free: Vegetarian Food

Leafy Green Vegetables

Green leafy vegetables play a large role in reducing the risk of glaucoma, as they have high nitrate levels. Nitrates in green leafy vegetables act as a precursor to nitrate oxide that helps in healthy blood circulation which is vital for eye health. According to research, the consumption of nitrate through leafy green vegetables can reduce the risk by 20%-30%.

A Bunch of Kale
Green leafy vegetables such as kale can help reduce the risk of getting glaucoma.

Eggplants

Eggplants help to serve 5% of a person’s daily requirement of fibre, copper, manganese, B-6 and theanine. They also contain antioxidants like lutein as well as zeaxanthin that appears to play a considerable role in a person’s eye health.

Roasted Eggplant
Eggplants can be prepared in many different ways! Roasting them is one way.

Goji Berries

These berries, which are native to Asia, are believed to protect people against eye-related diseases. They help in the reduction of the risk of loss of vision as they contain antioxidants, especially zeaxanthin which is also found in eggplant. Goji berries protect the retina from the ganglion cells that are responsible for the glaucoma condition.  Drinking goji berry juice for 90 days can increase antioxidants level significantly protecting the eyesight.

Acai Bowl with Fruit and Goji Berries.
You can have goji berries in many different ways. One way is to put them in a smoothie bowl.

Blackcurrants

Have you ever eaten blackcurrants and not liked it? Well, now is the time you start having it for its health benefits! Blackcurrants are berries that contain anthocyanins which have the potential to prevent the risk of glaucoma. Intake of blackcurrants every day can help reduce the intraocular pressure. It also helps in improve the blood flow to the eyes, slow progress in the visual field deterioration, the eye’s ability to adapt in the dark and symptoms of visual fatigue.

Black currants, a shrub berry native to Europe, were banned from the United States in 1911. (Shutterstock)

Blackcurrants can be kind of difficult to eat alone. You can make them into a jam or a dessert!

Oranges and Peaches

Oranges and peaches are some other fruits to help with glaucoma. Peaches contain antioxidant beta-carotene which when goes into the body turns into Vitamin A. Oranges are a citrus fruit that contains Vitamin C essential for healthy eyesight. Orange and peaches consumption can reduce the risk of glaucoma by 82% and 70% respectively.

A bunch of peaches.
Peaches have Vitamin A and oranges are rich in Vitamin C. Both are important vitamins to help with glaucoma. 

Dairy products

Dairy products can be useful to keep the eyes healthy. They are rich in Vitamin A and Zinc that will help protect the cornea. Zinc is present throughout the eyes. Such essential minerals can help with the night vision as well as the prevention of cataracts.

A glass of milk
Dairy has important vitamins and minerals for glaucoma. 

Nuts and Seeds

If you are a vegetarian and need to find options that contain Omega-3 acids other than fishes, nuts and seeds are your answer. They also hold Vitamin E that can help protect the eyes. A fun way for their intake is to either grind them or serve them just like that.

Maybe add them to your pancakes, yoghurt or other food items for better eye health. Some of the nuts and seeds with Omega-3 acids are flaxseed, chia seeds, and walnuts.

A pile of a variety of nuts.

Add some nuts to your diet!

Filled with Protein: Non-Vegetarian Food

Seafood

Research conducted showed that EPA (eicosapentaenoic) and DHA (docosahexaenoic) fatty acids and omega-3 fatty acids were lowered in glaucoma patients. Wild-caught salmon is one of the best sources of EPA and DHA. Along with water fish such as tuna, sardines and herring that contain acids that improve ocular blood flow which thus decreases the risk of glaucoma.

A plate of salmon on a bed of vegetables.
Fish has vital Omega-3 Fatty Acids to help with glaucoma.

Shellfish

Shellfish like Oysters are the best sources of mineral zinc which protects the eyes. It is also a natural source of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids help to protect the eyes from developing macular degeneration and dry eye syndrome. They may also help with proper drainage of intraocular fluid from the eye, which decreases the risk of glaucoma.

Three oysters with lemon slices on them

Eggs

Eggs are also a great source to protect from increased glaucoma. Egg yolks are rich in lutein, a type of carotenoid that helps fight the causes of legal blindness. Scientists believe that lutein is better absorbed by the body from eggs. 

Eggs also contain vital amino acids and phytonutrients that are great for improving eyesight. 

A carton of six brown eggs

Try having two eggs every day to protect the eyes.

Conclusion

Keeping up with the health of the eyes is our responsibility! Try to incorporate at least some of these foods in your diet. This can either help reduce the risk of getting glaucoma or make living with it easier. 

Read our other blogs and learn about how Vision Buddy can help with eye conditions such as glaucoma!