Antioxidants Combat Glaucoma, Depression

Although there is no cure for glaucoma, antioxidants have been use to prevent and treat it. Research has shown strong links between antioxidants and eye health. The Glaucoma Research Foundation recommends the consumption of foods that are high in antioxidants, particularly lutein and zeaxanthan.

Spinach and other green leafy vegetables are among the best for eye health. Other vegetables containing generous amounts of lutein and zeaxanthan include broccoli, squash, green peppers and Brussels sprouts.  Fruits and vegetables containing high levels of vitamins C, E and A as well as the mineral zinc can also help maintain healthy vision. 

The depression associated with glaucoma often goes away after the prescription medications are eliminated or reduced. Some of the same antioxidants that protect eye health also provide mood-boosting properties that help fight depression. 

Because most people do not get the levels of antioxidants they need from their diets, millions of people take nutritional supplements to maintain eye health. There are several on the market that are specifically formulated to promote healthy vision. Talk to your holistic practitioner to determine the one that will work best for you. Nutritionists also recommend limiting caffeine because excessive amounts can increase pressure within the eye.

A healthy lifestyle is your best defense against glaucoma and other age-related diseases. Good nutrition, regular exercise, adequate rest and an optimistic outlook on life can help you look and feel great throughout all the stages of your life. 

Facts about Glaucoma

Vision loss is one of the greatest fears affecting people over the age of 60 so it is understandable that a diagnosis of glaucoma can trigger episodes of depression. According to the British Journal of Ophthalmology there is a strong correlation between glaucoma and depression which is often exacerbated by the medications that are prescribed to treat glaucoma. 

According to the Glaucoma Research Foundation, glaucoma is linked to increased pressure in the eye which damages the optic nerve and compromises the drainage of eye fluids.  Many people experience no symptoms in the early stages of the disease, which is why it is important to have regular eye exams. Early detection allows for a treatment plan that will help keep the condition from worsening.

Every adult should have their eyes examined at least every three years. Adults over the age of 60 need annual eye exams to look for signs of age-related eye diseases and vision changes. People with existing eye conditions or a family history of eye disease may need more frequent exams.

Although anyone can be affected by glaucoma certain factors are linked to increased risk. Those factors include aging, family history, diabetes and severe nearsightedness. Glaucoma is most prevalent in people over the age of 60.   

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