Cataracts are a natural part of aging. They develop when the lens inside our eye becomes cloudy. Though cataracts may occur at any age, even in children, the likelihood of developing cataracts is higher as we get older. In fact, most people have some degree of cataract by their late 50s or early 60s.
Is there any way to delay the onset of cataracts or prevent them from progressing? The answer is YES!
To try to prevent cataracts, it is important to first understand why they develop in the first place. When we are young, the lens within our eye is made out of clear proteins. These clear proteins are vulnerable to damage from molecules known as free radicals.
Free radicals are commonly found within our bodies and come many sources, including the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays, tobacco smoke, pollution, and even the body’s normal process of using energy. Damage from free radicals, called oxidation, changes our lens proteins and makes them cloudy.
Antioxidants help slow down or prevent damage by neutralizing free radicals. So, the most important way to prevent cataracts is a diet rich in antioxidants. Studies from the United States, Japan and Sweden all have shown that a diet rich in foods with antioxidants may reduce your risk of developing cataracts. Antioxidants include vitamins C and E, certain substances in plants called flavonoids, and some minerals like selenium.
While you can take antioxidant supplements, these beneficial vitamins and minerals are best when they come from a healthy diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables. In fact, there are specific vegetables and fruits which are nutrient-dense and extremely rich in antioxidants.
I call these “Vision Superfoods” and I strongly recommend them to my patients. You can download my free e-book called “6 Secrets to Eye Health” from my website to learn more about these superfoods. So, remember to load up on “Vision Superfoods” the next time you are grocery shopping!
If you have specific questions about prevention of cataracts or cataract surgery, I’d be happy speak with you. Schedule a complimentary phone consultation with me by clicking HERE or calling 646-820-2074.