Some may take their vision for granted if they’ve never needed glasses. But aside from corrective lenses, there’s actually quite a bit more you can do for your eyes to make sure they stay in tip-top shape. Think of is this way: How many hours per day do you spend staring at a computer screen? If you’re baffled by the figure you come up with, consider these options for protecting your eyes.
1. Start with your diet.
According to the National Institutes of Health, a diet rich in fruits and veggies has the right vitamins to keep your eyesight healthy. Below nutrients play a crucial role in preventing age-related issues with your eye sight.
Omega-3: flax seeds, chia seeds, beans, avocado, nori
Vitamin A: Carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, cantaloupe
Vitamin C: red bell pepper, berries, oranges, lemon, grapefruit
Vitamin E: avocado, almonds
Zinc: Cashews, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, fortified foods
In addition to these, don’t forget to eat lots of fresh leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, chard, collard greens, etc.
2. Follow the 20-20-20 rule.
In order to reduce eyestrain from staring at your computer all day, follow this easy rule: every 20 minutes, look at something at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds. That will allow your eyes to take a brief rest. I’d even recommend following these tips on getting some exercise at the office since they’ll help relax not just your eyes but your whole body!
3. Wear your shades.
Not only will you look sweet in your Ray-Bans, but you’ll also protect your eyes from harmful UV radiation! Too much exposure to UV can cause macular degeneration or cataracts. I personally rarely go out without my sunglasses so I have about a million pairs lying around my apartment and in various purses. Make sure you choose good quality shades that block both UVA and UVB rays.
4. Get regular eye exams.
This is always my standard recommendation when it comes to health issues: Make sure you’re seeing a health professional regularly. I waited nearly five years to get an eye exam and it turned out that my prescription had been too strong that entire time. I suffer from headaches and light sensitivity, so wearing this incorrect prescription may have made those worse! I have new glasses now in the right prescription and it feels great.
5. If you need glasses, have fun with them!
Many sites will allow you to upload a photo of yourself and virtually “try on” glasses, but make sure you get your pupillary distance measurement from your optician first! Furthermore, you can use websites like coastal.com to get a free or cheap pair of glasses. As glasses tend to be pretty pricey, sites like this will allow you to have a little more variety without breaking your bank! I also recommend getting lenses with anti-reflective coating as this will protect your eyes from the glare of a computer monitor or during night driving.
Photo: Anka Nivsilyeva via Flickr