beaumont vision pdx eyecare blog

What Is the Relationship Between Regular Exercise and Eye Health?

Maintaining Optimal Physical Health Is Great for Your Eyes

We all know that diet and exercise are important for good health. But what about eye health? Can working out on a regular basis really impact the health and strength of your eyes? It may surprise you to learn that the answer is yes, and if you want to maintain good eyesight, it’s important to appreciate how and why both exercise and diet can contribute.

eye health and exercise

How Do Physical Exercise and Diet Help My Eyes?

It may be hard to see how working out can improve your eye health, but studies suggest that it can. Research done over the last decade has shown a link between regular exercise and lower risk for eye diseases like glaucoma, cataracts and wet age-related macular degeneration.

So why is exercise good for your eyes? One reason may be that cardiovascular exercises can lower intraocular pressure. This reduced pressure puts less stress on the retinal ganglion cells of the eye, as well as increasing blood flow to the optic nerve and retina. This is why cardiovascular exercise may often be prescribed to people suffering from glaucoma.

In addition to exercise, a good diet is critical in maintaining eye health. As WebMD says, “good eye health starts with the food on your plate.” The right foods are filled with nutrients that can benefit the eyes, including Omega-3 fatty acids, found in oily fish like salmon and tuna, Vitamin C, found in citrus fruits and juices like oranges and orange juice, lutein, zinc, Vitamin A and Vitamin E.

Like regular exercise, foods like those mentioned above along with green leafy vegetables, eggs, nuts, beans and other non-meat proteins and even oysters and pork can help ward off cataracts and macular degeneration.

Some doctors suggest keeping in mind the ACE acronym, meaning that foods high in Vitamins A, C and E can be great for your vision and you should try to get the recommended daily allowance of these vitamins regularly for continued eye health.

How Can Obesity or Other Health Issues Affect My Eyes?

Another way that exercise and diet can help eye health is by helping you ward off diseases that could hurt your eyes. Being overweight and having a poor diet can lead to diabetes, which can damage the blood vessels of the retina, causing blindness. In fact, Type 2 diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adults.

Obesity can also cause high blood pressure and high cholesterol, which are two big factors that can be indicated in eye disease. Regular working out can help you stay at a healthy weight and keep your cardiovascular system strong.

Contact Beaumont Vision for Better Eye Health

In addition to regular exercise and a good diet, one of the best things you can do for your eyes is to submit to regular eye exams. One of the biggest contributors to eyesight deterioration is delayed care. An eye care professional can help address any issues with your eyesight before problems progress and give you tips on how to best care for your eyes.

At Beaumont Vision, we foster long-term relationships with our patients by providing exceptional eye care in a welcoming atmosphere. To schedule an appointment in the Portland area with an experienced, professional eye care specialist in a comfortable, intimate setting, contact Beaumont Vision now.

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Phone: 503- 331-3937 • Fax: 503-528-1234 • 4331 NE Fremont St, Portland, OR 97213