Aside from your essential organs, your eyes are among your body’s most essential parts. The same way we rely on our eyes to see, our eyes rely on a lens to bend incoming light and form clear images. Over time, however, your lenses can develop cataracts which cause them to cloud and diminish your vision. While there is no 100% proven method of preventing cataracts, taking certain steps now can help to protect your eyes and reduce your risk of developing cataracts later on.
1. Protect Your Eyes from the Sun
Although sunlight is not the direct cause of cataracts, excessive exposure has been shown to increase your risk of developing them. To keep your eyes adequately protected, invest in sunglasses with UV protection, and wear a wide brimmed hat to keep your eyes properly shaded while outdoors.
2. Maintain a Healthy Diet
In addition to being a major risk to your overall health, studies have shown that diabetes can increase your risk of developing cataracts. The first step to avoiding diabetes? A healthy diet. Maintaining a healthy blood sugar level will keep your eyes (and the rest of your body) much healthier as you age.
3. Limit Your Alcohol Consumption
In general, preserving bodily health is an important step to preventing cataracts. Just like a poor diet, excessive alcohol consumption can promote unhealthy blood sugar levels which increase your risk of developing cataracts.
4. If You Smoke, Stop
Need another reason to quit? It’s no secret that smoking is absolutely horrible for your lungs, but did you know that tobacco can also harm your vision? According to recent research, your risk of developing cataracts doubles if you smoke cigarettes.
5. Keep Key Nutrients in Your Diet
Studies have shown that the right balance of certain vitamins, antioxidants and minerals in your diet can seriously reduce your risk of developing cataracts. To make sure you’re maintaining an eye-friendly diet, eat plenty of dark-green leafy vegatables. They contain the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which studies have linked to an 18% decrease in the likelihood of cataract development. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish like salmon and sardines can also help you reduce your risk of developing cataracts.
6. Maintain Regular Eye Appointments
The best way to avoid cataracts is to have your eyes checked regularly. Even if your eyes seem healthy, regular eye exams are the only way to detect early signs of eye disorders such as cataracts, glaucoma, or macular degeneration. After all, early detection can reduce your risk of permanent damage and save your vision!
7. Keep Your Vision Intact at Eye Center of Texas
If you’re experiencing vision issues due to cataracts, Eye Center of Texas is the first step to healthier, longer-lasting vision. Using only the finest technology at each of our six locations, our doctors work to make each experience comfortable, convenient and pain free. Find the location nearest you, and schedule an appointment to get started!