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 Can You Avoid Cataracts?

Dec 18, 2023
 Can You Avoid Cataracts?
Is it possible to avoid cataracts? Let’s look at how vision-friendly diets, lifestyle choices, and proactive strategies may help prevent cataracts.

Cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s natural lens, are a common vision concern as you age. Despite no studies proving how to prevent or slow their growth, proactive measures may offer some help.

At Ophthalmology Associates of Bay Ridge in Brooklyn, New York, Elias Aliprandis, MD, and Irene Rusu, MD, our highly experienced team offers cataract surgery using the latest leading-edge approaches. With a 30-year history of helping patients reclaim clear eyesight safely, we’re also here to help you explore the world of cataracts and discover strategies to promote clear vision for years to come.

Understanding cataracts 

Before talking about prevention, let’s grasp the basics of cataracts. The lens of your eye, responsible for focusing light onto your retina, tends to become less transparent over time. This clouding of your lens leads to cataracts, causing blurred vision and, in advanced stages, significant visual impairment. While aging is the primary contributor, other factors like genetics, diabetes, and certain medications can accelerate their development. 

Let’s look at some strategies that may help you experience continued good eyesight.

Nourish your eyes

What you eat can significantly impact your eye health. Incorporating vision-friendly foods into your diet may contribute to cataract prevention: 

Antioxidant-rich foods

Fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidants, such as vitamin C and beta-carotene, can help combat oxidative stress in your eyes. Include colorful produce like oranges, berries, and leafy greens in your meals.

Omega-3 fatty acids 

Cold-water fish like salmon and trout are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, known for their anti-inflammatory properties. These fats may play a role in maintaining healthy eye tissues. 

Lutein and zeaxanthin

Found in eggs, corn, and leafy greens, these carotenoids are associated with a lower risk of cataracts. Consider adding spinach, kale, and broccoli to your plate. 

Shield your eyes

Prolonged exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays is a known risk factor for cataracts. To protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful effects: 

Wear sunglasses

Invest in sunglasses that block 100% of UVA and UVB rays. A wide-brimmed hat can also provide additional protection. 

Choose UV-blocking contact lenses

If you wear contact lenses, choose the type that offers UV protection. This extra layer of defense contributes to long-term eye health. 

Limit sun exposure

Be mindful of your time in the sun, especially during peak hours. When possible, seek shade and give your eyes a break. 

Choose healthy lifestyle choices 

Nurturing your overall health significantly contributes to the well-being of your eyes. Quitting smoking, a known risk factor for cataracts, not only benefits your overall health but also supports clear vision. 

Effectively managing chronic conditions, such as diabetes, through medication, diet, and exercise can positively impact your eye health by slowing the development of cataracts. 

Additionally, routine eye exams are crucial for detecting early signs of cataracts and other eye conditions. By scheduling regular checkups at Ophthalmology Associates of Bay Ridge, you ensure proactive management and promote the longevity of your clear vision.

If you’re ready to learn more about proactive measures for cataracts and discuss treatment options, click here to set up an appointment with our team of experts today!