Doctor HIP: It’s all in the eyes

Published on October 11th, 2011
Doctor HIP: It's all in the eyes

Did you know that according to a recent survey, South Africans value their sight more than any of our other senses.

So in honour of World Sight Day on 13 October, and because we like you, we’re going to give you a few guidelines on how to keep your peepers in tip-top shape.

So sit back and let Doctor Hip give you some good advice…

Eat Carrots: Yes, your mother was right, these little orange wonders really do help out with vision. Carrots contain beta-carotene, which help your eyes see at night. Other fruits can also help out with that – melons, peaches, tomatoes, plums and red grapes are prime beta-carotene wonders.

Eggsightment: Not only are eggs good sources of protein (you know, the stuff that you’re mainly made from), but they also contain cysteine, sulfur, lecithin, carotenoids and zeaxanthin – these can protect the lens of the eye from cataract formation and prevent some other common forms of blindness.

Go Nuts: Nuts contain selenium, which stimulates the immune system and helps to defend against catarats and diabetic retinopathy. They also contain magnesium, which can help delay the onset of glaucoma.

Be like Popeye: Spinach won’t make you super-strong or turn you into a sailor, but it has a high carotenoid content, as well as lutein and zeaxanthin, which help to protect the retina of the eye from UV light.

Be Cool: Staring at the sun is a no-no (but hopefully you already knew that). This isn’t just because it’s so bright – you could stare into a really bright torch and not sustain any permanent harm. Rather, it’s due to that old bad-guy, UV, which damages DNA and can cause severe problems over time. One way of dealing with this is to wear sunglasses when you’re outdoors, but they become a bit of a hassle when you’re out of the sun. That’s where variable tint lenses become useful – lenses which are dark and filter out UV when in sunlight, but go clear when you’re out of harm’s way. Sounds like magic? Nope, just good old-fashioned science.

Visit the optometrist: If you’re having trouble with your eyes, or if you find yourself constantly squinting or you have headaches after staring at your computer too long, don’t keep it to yourself. Go find out what the pros have to say before it’s too late.

Take care of those eyes, okay? Life’s tough enough even when you can see what’s coming…