As the saying goes, ‘prevention is better than cure’, and the first step to take in caring for your eyes naturally is to give them some screen-free time. But how exactly are screens bad for our eyes?
The blue light they emit attacks the retina and reduces the frequency of blinking. This causes fatigue and dry eye which is uncomfortable, if not painful.
It’s therefore important to take regular breaks and to get some exposure to daylight to compensate for this adverse effect. In addition, if your device offers the option of controlling the type of light diffused by the screen, you could choose a warmer one. Other options are to wear glasses that block blue light and to make use of eye drops.
Enjoying a bowl of bilberries in summer is not only a treat for your tastebuds, but one for your eyes too! They contain a significant level of anthocyanins, antioxidants that benefit eye health.
It’s thought that bilberries help to stabilise collagen levels in the eye, promote visual clarity and maintain retinal function (1).
To increase your intake, you could take a bilberry supplement (such as Bilberry Extract, made from wild bilberries and standardised to 25 % anthocyanins). You could also choose a formulation like Eye Pressure Control, which contains other beneficial compounds in addition to bilberry extract.
It’s true – your eyes can also benefit from a little exercise! Repeating a few eye movements every day will help relieve visual fatigue, especially that caused by screen exposure. Here are two simple exercises to try:
Vitamin A helps maintain normal vision. In particular, it supports daily replacement of cells and helps the conjunctiva, the mucous membrane which protects the eye, to produce sufficient mucus. (2).
Vitamin A is found in many foods: dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach, as well as carrots, squash and other orange-coloured fruits and vegetables.
In terms of animal-source foods, include eggs and liver in your diet on a regular basis for extra vitamin A. For optimal absorption, vitamin A needs fatty acids, so add a drizzle of oil to your dishes.
To ensure a higher intake of vitamin A, you could also take a dietary supplement (such as Carottol), or the synergistic formulationOptivision which contains both an extract of bilberry as well as retinol, a form of vitamin A.
Your skin is not the only part of your body to be vulnerable to UV damage. Prolonged, repeated exposure to UV rays can also have adverse effects on the health of your eyes (3).
For effective protection, wear good quality sunglasses with an adequate level of protection. For driving, choose sunglasses with category 3 protection, the maximum authorised. For mountain walks where sunlight and glare are especially intense, it’s best to go for the highest protection, category 4. .
Known for their heart health properties, omega-3 fatty acids also have an effect on the eyes! One of them, DHA, helps to maintain normal vision. It is highly concentrated in the retina, and more specifically, in the membranes of the rod outer segments of photoreceptor cells (4).
DHA is primarily found in fish and seafood: salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel, sea bream, shrimps, etc. Another way of increasing your intake is to take a DHA supplement (such as the fish oil-based Super DHA.
Palming is a simple measure you can do several times a day, wherever you are, both day and evening. How is it done?
Simply place the cupped palms of your hands over your eyes for a few minutes and relax completely. Do this exercise in a seated position with your elbows on the table and your head resting in your hands. For greater comfort, rub your hands together before placing them on your eyes. The gentle warmth acts to relax your eyes deeply, thus helping to protect them.
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