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Seeing into the future

41 days to go

This is not about clairvoyance but rather about looking after our eyes to keep them healthy.

Today I was out on a challenging little ridge where I needed to think carefully about where I was putting my feet so was concentrating a lot looking at the ground.  Running on uneven and rocky terrain needs good eye-foot coordination and I was very conscious when I came back onto the fells to train last month that this was a skill I had lost somewhat. Fortunately, I’m re-learning it slowly but I’m still somewhat clumsy at times and trip more than I should. It got me thinking about how well we look after our vision.

As well as a visit to the optician (see below) there are lifestyle choices we can adopt that are beneficial to eye health.

Regular physical activity can help improve blood flow to the optic nerve and the retina. Being physically active can also help to prevent or reduce high blood pressure and is also beneficial in managing diabetes and each of these conditions can harm vision through damage they cause to blood vessels.

A diet which includes fresh fruit and vegetables can provide micronutrients that are important for eye health.  For example, carotenoids found in green leafy vegetables may help with conditions like cataract formation and age related macular degeneration.  Foods rich in Vitamin B, zinc, beta carotene and Vitamin E are all shown to maintain healthy eyes. These can be found in many fresh foods including carrots, sweet potatoes, nuts and seeds, lentils, beans, milk, fish, eggs and others.

Visit the optician

In November 2020, the UK charity Fight for Sight conducted a survey which found that nearly two out of every five people in the UK reported negative consequences of the increased screen time due to the impact of lockdown and working from home which had them spending more time than ever om their computers and tablets.  They reported difficulty with reading, headaches and migraines and poorer night vision. But, they also reported they were less likely to have their eyes checked out being concerned about the spread of COVID.

Having a regular eye test every couple of years is important in maintaining good eye health because as well as problems affecting the eyes themselves, there are a number of other health conditions that can show up in an examination of our eyes before we’re even aware we have a problem, such as high blood pressure and diabetes.

When did you last have your eyes tested?

 

 

 

 

 

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