Every day we eat food and drink water to keep our body alive. We try our best to fuel ourselves with good healthy choices to keep us at our best. We also try to pass this information on to our children – not always an easy task!
Kids can be picky. A diet full of healthy nutritious foods is not only great for bodies, it’s great for our minds and our eyes too! We function our best on a full belly of nutrient dense food, and our eyes are the same – they need the proper nutrients to be at their best. When your child has vision problems it is particularly important to take a deeper look into eating for proper eye health. You and your child can eat your way to happy healthy eyes and it’s not as hard or technical as you think!
When it comes down to it, our bodies are mostly water, and that includes our eyes too. We are basically cucumbers with eyes. Not getting enough water, or getting to dehydrated can leave to many problems, including itchy dry eyes. Always begin and end each day with a glass of water, and have your child learn to take a water bottle with them when you go out. If you live in a hot, humid area, like we do – this is essential.
Brekky for Dinner
Eggs are such a versatile food, you can have them for breakfast, lunch or dinner. They are also great for little eyes. Healthline.com says, “The yolks contain vitamin A, lutein, zeaxanthin, and zinc, which are all vital to eye health. Vitamin A safeguards the cornea. The cornea is the surface of the eye. Lutein and zeaxanthin lower the chance of getting serious eye conditions like age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. Zinc contributes to the health of the retina. The retina is the back of the eye. Zinc also helps eyes see at night.”
Good old fruit – great for everything! Full of nutrients, full of water and such a variety, it is easy to incorporate fruit into your diet every day. As the Wiggles say, “fruit salad, yummy, yummy.” Got a little one who loves oranges? Perfect. Healthline.com says that, “Oranges and other citrus fruit contain vitamin C, which is key for eye health. The vitamin, found mainly in fresh fruits and vegetables, contributes to healthy blood vessels in your eyes. It can combat the development of cataracts, and in combination with other vitamins and nutrients, age-related macular degeneration.”
Fish are full of omega-3 fatty acids are great for eye development. Try incorporating a ‘Fish Friday’ at your place, as a fun way to get more fish into your family’s diet. Not all fish taste the same, so keep trying it until you find one the kids will eat. Salmon is high in nutrients and not so “fishy” tasting.
Smashed avocado anyone? Yes, please! We all need some fats to survive, and your eyes are the same, so get your fats from healthy sources like avocados and nuts, and olive oil. Avocado can be used on sandwiches, in salads, as a dip for tortilla chips, and even put into smoothies. Nuts are a great on the go snack – barring no allergies of course.
Do carrots really help us see in the dark? Sort of. They protect the eye surface and that helps everyone see better. Healthline.com adds, “carrots have vitamin A and also beta carotene. Vitamin A and beta carotene help the surface of the eye and can also help prevent eye infections and other serious eye conditions.” Sounds good to me! Carrots – the eye’s defender!
Some vitamins and supplements are recommended for proper eye health and function. However, some are not ideal for children. Glucosamine, or a multi vitamin? Talk to your eye doctor about what, if any, supplements your vision kid should be taking. Kids, on average, are healthier than adults and so don’t always lack the vitamin absorption that we adults have. Always consult a doctor before taking vitamin and mineral supplements.
Eating healthy – it’s essential for eyes. Try turning it into a game at the supermarket, see who can spot the most ‘healthy eye foods’, put them in the trolley and check them off the list. Kids will often make healthy food choices on their own if we include them in the process and set a good example.