May is Healthy Vision Month, an initiative of the National Eye Institute. People with diabetes are 40% more likely to get glaucoma and 60% more likely to develop cataracts than people without diabetes. They are also at risk for diabetic retinopathy, which is a term for several different disorders of the retina caused by diabetes.
But enough with the gloom and doom. The good news is that you can proactively stave off eye problems. The following are important preventative measures you can take:
- Maintain good blood sugar control.
- Keep your blood pressure in check.
- Get a comprehensive dilated eye exam once a year.
- Live a healthy lifestyle, which includes eating nourishing foods and maintaining a healthy weight.
- Know your family history in order to determine your risk of certain eye diseases.
- Wear sunglasses.
- Use protective eyewear.
Guess which recommendation the Virtual Potluck gang is going to focus on next week? That’s right, we’re going to give you some recipes for healthy foods that will nourish your eyes. Some of the best foods for healthy vision are dark, leafy greens such as kale, collards, chard, and spinach and fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids such as tuna, salmon, and halibut.
Here’s what National Eye Institute deputy clinical director Dr. Emily Chew had to say about foods that improve your eyesight in an interview with the The Wall Street Journal [VIDEO link]:
Our bet is that you are already eating fish once or twice a week, but that your diet probably doesn’t include enough leafy greens. So we’re going to inspire you.
Next week, the following Virtual Potluck bloggers will post mouth-watering recipes featuring kale, collards, spinach, and chard:
- Salmon Tacos with Kale, Collards and Lemon-Tomato Vinaigrette from Diabetic Foodie
- Spicy Lemony Sautéed Rainbow Kale from Cookistry
- Kale, Carrot, and Green Apple Slaw from Food Hunter’s Guide to Cuisine
- Lemon Grilled Chicken with Farro and Wilted Greens from Miss in the Kitchen
- Panko Crusted Baked Mahi Mahi with Garlic Greens from Thyme in Our Kitchen
The rest is up to you.