Have you noticed how today you can rarely spot a child without eyeglasses? Children are being diagnosed with eye diseases most commonly seen in post-middle-aged adults. This should not be surprising at all since eye abuse starts early. Children are active overtime on smartphones and Ipads. Also, television programs which claim to educate children also encourage them to spend large parts of the day glued to the TV. Their diet quality has equally declined with junk food and sugary treats taking the place of healthy alternatives. Is it any wonder that our children’s’ eyesight is in danger?
How can you maintain your child’s eyesight? It is much easier to provide nutritious, eye-friendly foods in the diet than to drag them away from their favorite devices. Here are the best foods to get you started:
- Carrots: They are a rich source of Vitamin A, an essential vitamin to eye health. They contain beta-carotene, which helps eye components to function at full capacity and maintains eye structure. Their bright color is attractive to kids and this vegetable earns its place at the top of the list.
- Green, leafy vegetables: These contain nutrients such as zeaxanthin and lutein. They are essential for retina health and also protect the eyes from the sun’s rays. To extract maximum nutritional content, they should be simply cooked only for a couple of minutes. Spinach, parsley, and kale lead the brigade.
- Deep sea fish: These are essential not only for children but adults as well who have high exposure to technology every day. The Omega-3 fatty acids contained in these fish reduce dry eyes from staring at screens all day. In addition, they also provide lubrication and reduce the chances of macular degeneration and cataracts later in life. The best examples of these fish are tuna, salmon, and mackerel.
- Eggs: An egg is a nutrition superstar. The nutrients contained in a single egg promote not only eye health but benefit the entire body. Eggs prevent dry eyes and night blindness. The egg should be served along with the yolk as it is the most nutritious part of the egg.
- Capsicum: Another bright, attractive and versatile vegetable, capsicums are a great source of vitamin A.
- Citrus fruits and berries: These contain high levels of Vitamin C, which is essential to promote a strong immune system. They can help protect your children against eye infections.
- Beef: A great source of zinc, it helps Vitamin A to reach the portions of the body where it is required, including the eyes. This helps to produce melanin continuously, which reduces the chances of night blindness.
- Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, cashews, and pistachios are superfoods for eye health. They contain high levels of Vitamin E. Vitamin E not only helps control myopia but is also an effective antioxidant.
- Dark chocolate: One of the major sources of flavonoid, dark chocolate strengthens the cornea and eye lens. It also shields the blood vessels in the eyes. It can be used as a replacement for sugary treats.
- Foods containing Vitamin B complex: Liver, potatoes, milk, beans, and corn.
More steps you can take to protect your children’s eyes are:
- Set a fixed time when they are allowed to use technology which is a strain on the eyes.
- Get regular eye checkups to determine whether eyeglasses are required.
- Encourage outdoor play during daylight hours.
- Set a good example.
- Choose tasty recipes and modify the ones which make them avoid certain foods.
- Cut down on processed, sugary foods and drinks and provide healthy snacks.
The sooner you start, the better it is. Children are incredibly adaptable, and good habits last a lifetime.
Good luck and healthy happy living to you!