That moment, when your baby opened his eyes for the first time and looked at you, must have been truly special! These precious organs help him admire the world, recognise the smallest of things, and appreciate colours, shapes, textures, and more. Eyes complete your child’s life on earth and fill it with light. So, it makes sense to take good care of them by incorporating the right foods in his diet. Also, these days, toddlers spend a big chunk of their time watching a TV screen or a tablet, which can negatively affect their eyesight. So, being aware of foods that improve eyesight is necessary.
Foods for eyesight improvement:
Omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, and vitamin C and E, are the main nutrients needed to prevent vision problems. So, the risk of many common eye problems can be minimised if your child consumes the following food items:
- Provide oily fishes that have oil in their guts and body tissues, like ahi, rawas, rohu, pomfret, and hilsa. These are especially good for dry eye conditions.
- Nuts and legumes like walnuts, Brazil nuts, cashews, peanuts, and lentils have omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin E, which prevent any age-related damage to the eyes.
- Even seeds like chia, flax and hemp, are rich in these nutrients and should be added to your kid’s daily diet. You can sprinkle these on smoothies or yoghurt.
- Citrus fruits like lemon, oranges, grapefruits,and strawberries are rich in vitamin C, which is an antioxidant, and fights age-related eye problems. So, they will help as your child becomes an adult.
- Leafy greens like spinach have lutein, zeaxanthin, and vitamin C, which are essential nutrients for maintaining good eye health.
- Carrots are rich in both vitamin A and carotenoids (carotenoids lend the orange colour). Vitamin A is an essential part of rhodopsin, a protein which helps the retina with light absorption. Thus, carrots are among the top foods to improve eyesight fast.
- Sweet potatoes are enriched with beta carotene and vitamin E. Now, the retina and the vascular tissue surrounding the retina contain zinc. So, it is essential to include zinc in the diet to resolve weak eyesight.
- Eggs can maintain the overall health of the eyes as they are rich in lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin C, E, and zinc.
- Hydration is also important as it prevents dry eyes. So, remember to add healthy fats like olive oil or avocado to your child’s diet, whenever you are giving him foods rich in lutein and zeaxanthin. This way, his or her body can easily absorb the fats.
In case your kid is not getting enough nutrients from regular foods, consult an eye doctor about eye health supplements.
Along with healthy eating, it is also important to take other precautions to avoid eye damage in kids. Some of them are:
- If you are taking your kids out, make sure they wear the right kind of shades, which can protect their eyes from UV rays. Excess exposure to these rays can increase their risk of cataract and other vision problems in the future.
- If your kids participate in a sport like hockey, they are at risk of eye injuries. So, make them wear protective accessories like helmets with full face coverage.
- Staring at the computer, television, or phone screen for a long time can cause blurry vision, eye strain, dry eyes, headache, and pain in the upper body parts too. So, limit screen time for your kids.
- Taking your child to regular eye exams is absolutely essential, so that problems can be detected early on, and resolved. Certain conditions like glaucoma show no symptoms and can be detected only via an eye examination.
Inculcating healthy eating habits in your kid is not only beneficial for his or her eyes, but for overall growth and development as well. Hence, combining a balanced and nutritious diet with a healthy lifestyle is the way to go.