The good news is that valid scientific research shows that your diet can affect your eyes. Eating healthy is a risk factor that you can control.
Fruit & Vegetables
- Antioxidants protect against oxidative stress that leads to cell death, part of the process of AMD. Dark, green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, and collard greens contain high levels of lutein, a critical antioxidant. Antioxidants are also present in fruits and vegetables with bright color, including red grapes, peppers, corn, oranges, cantaloupe and mango. Look for fresh produce in a variety of colors to get a wide range of vitamins in your diet.
- Eat 5-9 servings a day. While this may sound like a lot, a serving is really only ½ cup of most foods or one cup of leafy greens.
- People who eat fish 2-3 times a week have a lower risk for AMD. Fish contain omega-3 which seems to be a critical nutrient for the heart and eyes. The best are cold water fish like salmon or sardines. If you cannot tolerate fish or obtain it easily, oral omega-3 supplements (fish oil capsules) are widely available.
Limit Your Fat
- Researchers have concluded that the real issue for AMD is the amount of saturated fat you consume. Saturated fats are found in processed foods, and in animal products - beef, lamb, pork, lard, butter, cream, whole milk and high fat cheese. Plant oils like coconut oil, cocoa butter, and palm oil are also high in saturated fats. Instead try to consume healthy fats like olive oil or avocado.