Vision loss can happen to the best of us. For seniors, vision loss can become an even greater concern. The good news is that there are some things you can do to protect your eyesight and help ensure that you have optimal vision.
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Learn 4 best practices you can begin implementing today to help you maintain the health of your eyes and ultimately lower your risk for vision loss.
Have a Routine Dilated Eye Exam
One of the best things you can do to protect your eyes is to receive a routine comprehensive dilated eye exam from an eye doctor. Many people believe that their eyes are fine, even when they have an underlying problem. An eye exam is the best way to be proactive about your current eye health and identify potential issues with your eyes before the problem becomes serious.
The good news is that with early intervention, many common vision problems can be treated with glasses or contact lenses. Even eye diseases, such as glaucoma and macular degeneration can be treated to slow the progression of vision loss.
Maintain Your Blood Sugar Levels
Another way to combat vision loss is by maintaining your blood sugar levels. Your blood sugar levels can have a significant impact on the quality of your eyesight, leading to various eye conditions like blurred vision, cataracts, glaucoma, and retinopathy.
To help maintain your levels, there are three important things that you will need to monitor. This includes your A1c, blood pressure, and cholesterol.
- A1c: This is a common blood test used to monitor a person's risk of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. A normal A1c is generally below 5.7%. However, it's important to speak with your doctor as they may set different goals for your A1c.
- Blood Pressure: You should aim for your blood pressure to be under 140/90 mmHg. But once again, goals may be different depending on what your doctor states.
- Cholesterol: To maintain blood sugar levels, you want to lower your LDL, which is considered bad cholesterol, and increase your HDL, which is good cholesterol. If you don't know your cholesterol, ask your doctor to run a test so you can be aware of your levels.
Eat for Your Sight
Did you know that increasing your intake of certain foods could help improve your eyesight? Many foods are enriched with the right nutrients to help you maintain optimal eye health.
There are a variety of foods to add to your food palette that can effectively support your eye health. Some foods to consider are carrots and dark, leafy greens like spinach, kale, and collard greens. In addition to this, omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to have eye health benefits. Foods with omega-3 fatty acids include salmon, tuna, and halibut.
Manage Your Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight is a great way to help prevent vision loss. This is because being overweight increases a person's risk of developing diabetes. In turn, diabetes increases the risk of developing certain types of vision loss, such as diabetic eye disease and glaucoma.
With that said, you can maintain a healthy weight by adopting a diet high in fruits and vegetables and ensuring that you get a little bit of physical activity each day.
Your eye health is certainly important. If you're a senior concerned with experiencing vision loss, don't be. There are many things that you can begin implementing today to lower your risk of vision loss.
Be sure to visit your eye doctor on a regular basis, maintain your blood sugar levels, and make healthier lifestyle choices. This includes incorporating foods that combat vision loss and managing your weight.