- Lutein and Zeaxanthin
Lutein and Zeaxanthin are yellow pigments found in many fruits and vegetables. They are also the pigment located in the retinas of your eyes that give then their yellow hue. As a nutrient, they are considered a good defense against cataracts and macular degeneration.
Sources include: fruits and vegetables such as spinach, corn, broccoli, kale, collard greens, green peas, romaine lettuce, green beans and oranges, as well as eggs.
Beta-carotene is the orange pigment that gives fruits and vegetables their color. When combined with zinc and Vitamins C and E it is thought to reduce the progression of macular degeneration.
Sources include: sweet potatoes, carrots, dried herbs, butternut squash, and a variety of leafy greens including kale, turnip greens, spinach, lettuce and collard greens.
- Bioflavonoids, or Flavonoids
These compounds, which are also plant pigments, may protect your eyes from cataracts and macular degeneration.
Sources include: Tea, blueberries, cherries, red wine, and citrus fruits
Selenium, when combined with carotenoids and Vitamins C and E, may protect against the risk of Age Related Macular Degeneration, or ARMD.
Sources include: Nuts, especially Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, fish and seafood, particularly oysters, mussels, crabs, lobster and caviar, liver, and bran.
Zinc is a mineral that, combined with Vitamin A, helps reduce the risk of night blindness, and is thought to reduce the risk of ARMD.
Sources include: seafood, especially oysters and crabs, lamb, wheat germ, roast beef, pumpkin and squash seeds, peanuts, and dark chocolate
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3s are thought to prevent ARMD and dry eyes.
Sources include: flax seeds, walnuts, seafood and fish including salmon, sardines, halibut, scallops and shrimp, and tofu.
The best way to get these nutrients is by consuming these foods on a regular basis, but there is also the option of using of supplements. Please consult your eye care provider about which supplements would be best for you.