Eyes Need Nourishment Too!

Salad apoloniaSummer is in full swing, and you can definitely feel the sun in Raleigh! If you read our first post from June, you have been vigilantly protecting your eyes by staying out of the sun, wearing protective eye wear, and wearing clothing that blocks or screens the sun’s rays.

While those are excellent ways to keep your eyes healthy, it’s important to arm your eyes from the inside, too. To do this, nourish your body with nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, lutein and zeaxanthin, beta-carotene, zinc, and vitamins A, C, and E.

Eating a balanced diet rich with these vitamins may protect your eyes from cataracts, macular degeneration, dry eyes, and night blindness. Although we encourage a healthy, balanced diet, be sure to talk with Beth R. Friedland M.D. at Park Ophthalmology in Raleigh and Durham before taking supplements. Taking too much and too many could be harmful.

Park Ophthalmology offers this informal guide for eye health:

Omega-3 Fatty Acids:

May prevent macular degeneration and dry eyes

In your diet:

  • Seafood
    • Wild salmon, tuna, mackerel
  • Nuts & oils
    • Walnuts, flaxseed, flaxseed oil, canola oil
  • Dark, leafy greens
    • Kale, spinach

Lutein & Zeaxanthin:

May prevent macular degeneration and cataracts

In your diet:

  • Leafy greens (richest in lutein and zeaxanthin)
    • Kale, spinach, collards, turnip greens, romaine lettuce
  • Vegetables
    • Corn, green peas, broccoli


May reduce the progression of macular degeneration (if taken with zinc and vitamins C and E)

In your diet:

  • Carrots, sweet potatoes, spinach, kale, butternut squash


May decrease risk of night blindness; zinc may also decrease cataract progression and decrease the development of macular degeneration.

In your diet:

  • Quinoa
  • Garbanzo beans
  • Lentils
  • Meat & Seafood
    • Beef, lamb, turkey, shrimp
  • Seeds & Nuts
    • Sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, cashews

Vitamin A:

May protect against night blindness and dry eyes

In your diet:

  • Sweet potato
  • Leafy greens
    • Spinach, kale, mustard greens, collard greens, turnip greens
  • Carrots

Vitamin C:

May protect against reduce risk of cataracts and macular degeneration

In your diet:

  • Fruit
    • Papaya, strawberries, pineapple, oranges, kiwi
  • Vegetables
    • Bell Peppers, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower               

Vitamin E:

May reduce risk of advanced AMD when eating a diet rich in Vitamins E and C and carotenoids

In your diet:

  • Sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach, avocado, peanuts, asparagus, shrimp

Eyes are so important for so many reasons. Keep them healthy and you will be seeing for a long time.


Park Ophthalmology welcomes patients from all areas of the Triangle and offers a wide variety of specialized services including surgery for diseases of the eye, vision examinations, eye safety information, sports medicine protective eyewear and counseling, contact lenses and evaluation, and all types of ocular diagnosis and treatment. Many types of surgery are available, including cataract and laser surgery. We are here for you and your eye and overall health. Give us a call today!


This article about eye exams is brought to you by the professional team atPark Ophthalmology located in the Triangle Region of North Carolina.

The information contained in this blog article is intended solely for informational purposes and is not intended to be offered as medical advice.



Park Ophthalmology

5306 NC Highway 55, Suite 102 (adjacent to the RTP/ Research Triangle Park)

Durham, NC 27713

Office: 919 544 5375

Fax: 919 544 5829


Park Ophthalmology North

6512 Six Forks Road, Suite 105

Raleigh, NC 27615

919 846 6915


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