Recent research findings have revealed many new and interesting facts. One of the most recent is also one of the most “eye-opening”. It was revealed that blindness– particularly macular degeneration caused blindness is NOT caused by age. This eye disorder in actuality is caused by improper diet and an unhealthy lifestyle. An eminent researcher at […]
Recent research findings have revealed many new and interesting facts. One of the most recent is also one of the most “eye-opening”. It was revealed that blindness– particularly macular degeneration caused blindness is NOT caused by age. This eye disorder in actuality is caused by improper diet and an unhealthy lifestyle.
An eminent researcher at Tufts University, Prof. Chung Jung Chiu has been involved in an 8- year study that will alter the way we all look at age and eye health.
He discovered that sugar and carbohydrates—all part of the modern diet – does not only affect your girth but also greatly affects your overall eye health. His research also recommended that, having a low –glycemic diet and regular exercise, would do wonders for your eyes. By simply eating right and working out you can preserve your vision longer.
The result of Prof. Chiu’s study has debunked the key health concept that You cannot avoid the degeneration of your vision as you age. The most commonly associated problems are cataracts, macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy and many others. The remedies offered by modern medicine are always invasive surgeries. You have lens replacements, cell transplants and the use of new experimental drugs.
Professor Chiu’s theory changes towards a healthy lifestyle as eye disease prevention is rather revolutionary.
Professor Chiu monitored the diet of 400 nurses all in the 53-73 age range for nearly 14 years. The results showed that those subjects who had highest amounts of carbohydrates consumed daily (200g/day) risked getting eye disease by as much as 2 ½ times more than those who consumed less carbohydrates. Diets high in processed sugars and carbs all point to higher risks to eye health.
In this case, the type or quality of carbohydrates consumed did not matter at all. It was the quantity or amount of it in the diet that was tipping point for eye health.
This was further confirmed by an Australian study which showed the amount of sugars in the diet of the individual was correlated with a rise in the blood’s sugar levels. This is a medical condition known as hyperglycemia. It has been known to cause hypertension, diabetes and is an indicator of obesity. However it has never been connected with degenerative eye disease. The results were astounding.
Those who had the highest levels of GI and ate a high carbohydrate diet had a 77 risk percentage of developing cataracts when compared to those who had a diet with lower GIs!
As we all get older we increase risks to our health. For eye health those in the 50s age group or higher have a stronger possibility of developing the following conditions:
It is suffice to say that for anyone across the world that are in the 50-year old age, an increased knowledge and foresight is a must for possible eye diseases.
These diseases affect millions of people across the world. Now they are wrongly perceived as primarily caused by old age. A healthy diet as the research suggest can help us avoid and even treat them altogether.
Diabetic studies have confirmed that a person whose diet has a high GI is more prone to getting cataracts. This is because high sugar levels in blood lead to glycation. This is a condition where all that free sugars in your blood bind to the proteins that make up your eye lens. This will initially lead to blurred vison. Glycation has even been recorded in patients who are not diabetics but have high levels of blood sugars. One study showed that people aged 49 years or older who have a fasting glucose level higher that 108mg/dL had a 79% greater risk of developing cataracts in the next ten years. While those who had glucose levels lower than 106 mg/dL and even had an 18 mg/dL increase – cataract risk increases by 25 percent.
Another research study done by the renowned Professor Chiu also looked at the risk of 500 nurses in developing Age Related Macular degeneration or AMD. This study showed the definitive link between the consumption of sugar and carbohydrates. This leads us to the AREDS (Age-Related Eye Disease Study) conducted on 4,000 subjects of both genders. This study indicated that a 49 percent increase in risk for AMD for those who had higher than normal blood GIs. These studies showed that just a simple reduction in the eating of processed carbohydrates can significantly reduce the incidence of AMD patients.
The core conclusion is simple. More processed foods in the form of carbohydrates and sugar causes hyperglycemia or the condition of having high blood sugar.
The Harvard School of Public Health also discovered a link between a high fat diet and age –related eye diseases. Animal, saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, high in omega 6, will double your risk of getting AMD.
On the other hand studies on Omega-3 fatty acids have shown that they are still your beneficial choice for a healthy diet. They still can provide a protective layer to your blood vessels. The level between omega 6 and 3 MUST be balanced in the diet.
The best sources for Omega – 3 are oily fish. Krill oil is an excellent choice and the most bio available for the body. For vegetarians, flax seeds is a good alternative. You should eat more Fruits, Vegetables, Whole Grains, Olive Oil and Fish. One of the best suggestions comes from the Mediterranean Diet. People from that region of Europe live longer and healthier lives. (See Mediterranean diet). Your body needs carb, the right way and that is in the form of fruits veg and berries.
A healthy diet is not only the key. But significant amounts of exercises as well, such as regular cardio work, running, brisk walking practised on a regular basis help maintaining eye health. To maintain a healthy body weight a total of 150 minutes of cardio exercise/week is enough. To lose weight then do more. A hundred fifty minutes is not a lot as long as you divide it by 7 days.
A healthy diet and regular exercise has not only been proven to help us avoid the weakness of hypertension, diabetes and even Alzheimer’s. It can help us avoid the so-called age related eye ailments of Cataracts, Diabetic Retinopathy and age related macro degeneration (AMD).
Here is a list that you can use for getting more added nutrition for your eyes. All come from natural sources and have been used by many individuals for better eye health.
— SEE the Best diets
-150 min exercise time Extracted from; http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html
Aude is an ex corporate Lawyer with a passion for health, self development and independence which lead her to give up her former career to help others through health.
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