SCEI's Founding Director, Dr. Rohit Varma, shares some tips for maintaining good eye health.
What types of preventative measures can people take to protect their eyes from damage or from loss of vision?
There are many things we can do to maintain our eyes healthy. The most important one is to get our eyes checked regularly by an ophthalmologist. Regular vision screening for refractive error and early eye disease may reduce or prevent individuals from experiencing unnecessary vision loss and blindness. Because eye conditions are more common after 40 years of age, you should make sure to get a dilated, comprehensive annual examination at least every 1-2 years. In addition, maintaining a healthy life style is important - such as not smoking, healthy diets, and reducing exposure to sunlight by wearing protective eyewear can help protect your eyesight. It is also important to know if there are any family risk factors for any eye disease and discuss prevention and/or treatment options with your ophthalmologist.
Is there anything one can eat/specific nutrients that can improve eye health and/or vision?
In general maintaining a healthy diet is always helpful. Some studies have found that lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc may play a role in maintaining healthy eyes. Data has also shown that antioxidant supplements, specifically vitamin D may play a role in reducing the risk of advanced age-related macular degeneration progression. More studies are needed to better understand the role of nutrients with vision.