Are you looking to maintain or improve your eye health naturally? One way to do this is through your diet. Our eyes need a variety of essential nutrients to function optimally, and by giving them what they need, we can support and protect them. There are so many wonderful natural foods that are jam-packed with these essential nutrients, all you need to do is start eating more of them! Here are some of the most nutritious foods for eye health that you can start eating more of today!
Recently I got a fright at my sudden deterioration in vision and decided to make eye health a priority. Apart from taking breaks from the screen and doing eye exercises, diet was top of the list.
I’ve had a lot of fun researching different foods and the essential nutrients they contain. And then putting together lists of foods that support different areas of health, like the eyes. Then, each week when I go off to do grocery shopping, I try and get at least one of these foods to eat during the upcoming week.
This is a great way to keep things fresh, by trying new foods and recipes regularly. Overall it encourages the most important thing of all, to eat a colourful variety of whole foods.
There are certain essential nutrients that are great for the eyes like Vitamin A, C, and D, omega 3 fatty acids, lutein, zeaxanthin and zinc.
Each has its own unique benefits in supporting, protecting and even improving eye health.
And so, one of the best ways you can add more of these nutrients to your diet and support your eye health is to eat more nutritious foods that contain them.
When you consider all the nutrients that whole nutritious foods, that support the health of all the cells in our bodies, you truly can appreciate that healthy food truly is medicine.
Below is a list, in alphabetical order, of some wonderful foods that are good sources of one or more of the above-mentioned nutrients.
Add one or more of the below foods to your next shopping basket. Have some fun and try new recipes.
If this is new to you, keep it simple by only trying 1 new food at a time, and by focusing on easy-to-make recipes with fewer ingredients. This way you’ll keep it fun instead of it becoming hard work.
Enjoy nourishing your body with whole nutritious foods, and feeling more alive with every day that passes!
Excellent source of vitamin C and vitamin A.
IDEAS: Sprinkle a few over your next breakfast bowl – like oats and yoghurt. Add a handful to your next smoothie – a simple banana-blueberry smoothie for breakfast is yummy.
Excellent source of vitamin A and C. Good source of potassium and zeaxanthin. IDEAS: Enjoy a slice of fresh melon in the morning with plain full-fat yogurt.
Excellent source of vitamin A. Good source of fibre, vitamin C and vitamin K. IDEAS: Snack on chopped carrots with homemade hummus. Enjoy steamed or roasted, and dressed with fresh lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and sea salt.
Excellent source of vitamin C. IDEAS: Add fresh lemon to your water. Drink warm lemon water (with fresh lemon juice) in the morning. Add a healthy squeeze of fresh lemon juice to your salads. Eat grapefruits for breakfast. Make freshly squeezed orange juice in the morning, especially during winter. Enjoy citrus fruits as snacks during the day.
Excellent course of lutein and zeaxanthin. Good source of vitamin D. IDEAS: Enjoy a couple of boiled eggs for breakfast with fresh rocket and tomato slices. Have a lightly fried or poached egg on whole rye toast. Make a tasty salad for lunch, with canned tuna, rocket, boiled eggs, dressed in fresh lemon, extra virgin olive oil and sea salt.
Excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids.
IDEAS: Start adding more fatty fish to your diet, like tuna, salmon, trout, herring, mackerel, sardines, and anchovies. Enjoy a piece of fish baked, dressed with extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice, and served with salad or steamed veggies. Have canned tuna with pepper and tomato on whole grain toast.
Excellent source of vitamin A and C, and zeaxanthin. Good source of fibre and iron. IDEAS: Add a handful of goji berries to your breakfast bowl – they go well with oats, yoghurt and fruit. Snack on a handful of goji berries to give you a little boost in the afternoon.
Excellent source of vitamin C and K, lutein and zeaxanthin. Good source of fibre. IDEAS: Cut kiwi in half and eat each half with a teaspoon. Peel, cut up, and enjoy with plain yoghurt.
Excellent source of vitamin A. Rich in lutein and zeaxanthin. Good source of vitamin C. EXAMPLES: Spinach, Kale, Microgreens, Cabbage, Collard Greens, Swiss Chard, Bok Choy, and Rocket. IDEAS: Enjoy as sides to protein, or have fun making different kinds of salads - Tuna and Rocket is a great combo!
Excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids.
EXAMPLES: Chickpeas, Lentils, and Peas. IDEAS: Make a hearty lentil soup, a pea and bacon soup, or a homemade hummus with chickpeas.
Excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids. Nuts are also a rich source of vitamin E. EXAMPLES: Walnuts, Peanuts, Brazil Nuts, Cashews, Almonds. IDEAS: Add to breakfast bowls, salads and wraps. Enjoy raw nuts as a snack.
Excellent source of vitamin C. Good source of vitamin A, fibre and folate. IDEAS: Enjoy a slice of fresh pawpaw in the morning with plain yoghurt.
Excellent source of vitamin C and manganese.
IDEAS: Eat freshly cut as a sweet pick-me-up snack. Enjoy with yoghurt or as a smoothie for breakfast. There are also some interesting savoury dishes like stir-fries, with pineapple added.
Excellent source of vitamin A and C. Good source of vitamin B6. IDEAS: Make a tomato and red pepper soup for dinner. Fill red pepper halves with ragu and bake in the oven. Add to stir-fries. Eat raw as a snack.
Excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids. Rich source of vitamin E. EXAMPLES: Sunflower seeds, Pumpkin seeds, Chia seeds, Flax seeds, Hemp seeds. IDEAS: Sprinkle over salads. Add to smoothies for a little crunch. Enjoy cashews in a chicken stir fry. Soak chia seeds in water or milk overnight and add to smoothies and breakfast bowls.
Excellent source of beta carotene (like carrots). Good source of vitamin C. IDEAS: Make sweet potato chips. Enjoy steamed or roasted and served as a side to protein.
One of the essentials for optimal health and vital for healthy eyesight. Our modern lifestyles often include a lot of time in front of the screen, which can result in dry eyes. Drinking more water can help prevent this condition. Dehydration in general is underrated and can become very serious. Keep your body hydrated and you’ll not only be doing your eyes a favour, but every cell in your body will thank you.
Ready to start eating for your eyes?
I hope this post has got you thinking about your eye health, and how you can protect your eyes by eating a variety of whole nutritious foods. All these foods are packed with essential nutrients that benefit your entire body, not just your eyes. It’s empowering to know that we can make a huge difference to our eye health simply through what we eat, don’t you agree?
Which of these foods do you currently eat? And which are you inspired to add to your plate? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to know.