The German Nutrition Society has stated that the Mediterranean diet supports eye health and protects against various conditions including age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataracts.
Vitamins and Omega-3
The German Society explains that the Mediterranean diet is based on fresh fruits and vegetables as well as fish rich in Omega-3, vitamins A, C and E, which are all important for eye health.
Moreover, leafy greens like spinach, kale, peppers, carrots, broccoli, beets and citrus fruits contain specific carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin that increase macular pigment density in the eyes, thus improving vision.
These pigments also absorb high-energy short wavelength light, protecting the retina from harmful photochemical reactions.
Furthermore, whole grains provide zinc, which is involved in the eye’s metabolic processes.
In addition to healthy nutrition, it’s important to stay hydrated by drinking enough fluids to protect the eyes from drying out. At least 2 litres of water and unsweetened tea per day are recommended.
Regular exercise and physical activity, especially endurance sports like running, swimming and cycling, are also beneficial as they boost circulation and promote the eye’s metabolism.
It is also important to avoid smoking and alcohol as they damage the small blood vessels that supply the optic nerve.
Moreover, experts recommend managing chronic conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and lipid metabolic disorders, since they can severely damage the eyes and potentially lead to blindness.