The Mindful Path – Vision

 06/30/2024 | 02:01 PM 

By Marilyn Halpern, MSW, LSW ~

“The eye is the jewel of the body.” Henry David Thoreau 

Healthy Vision Month is celebrated every July to stress the importance of the health of our eyes.  Protecting our eyesight enhances our overall wellbeing and promotes better brain health. Visual impairment in older adults has been associated with impaired cognitive function, dementia, and Alzheimer disease.

Tips for Better Vision

  1. Get a comprehensive eye exam. Preventative health appointments can often be overlooked. July is the perfect time to get your vision screening on the calendar.
  2. Wear sunglasses that block ultraviolent light. Sunglasses can effectively block UV rays. This is essential if you wish to avoid common eye problems in the summer. Wearing sunglasses while driving may improve your vision, lessen eyestrain and make you feel more at ease.
  3. Broad-brimmed hats provide added protection from the sun. 
  4. Drink up. Staying hydrated is important for your eye health. Dehydration reduces the lubrication in your eyes which can cause eye strain. 
  5. Wear the appropriate eye protection. Consider wearing goggles when swimming, protective eyewear when mowing the grass or doing other activities where eyes may be exposed to particles or dust. 
  6. Rest your eyes every 20-minutes when working at the computer. Long screen time can cause eye strain, blurred vision, dry eye syndrome, and headaches.
  7. Read with good lighting and in a comfortable position. 
  8. Ditch the smokes. Smoking has been linked to notable increased risk for glaucoma, cataracts, and diabetic retinopathy.
  9. Eat a rainbow of foods. Good nutrition has been linked to good vision. It is preferable to eat a range of colorful fruits, vegetables, and other whole foods that are high in vitamins and antioxidants. Summer is a great time to enjoy leafy greens, such as spinach, kale, broccoli, and collard greens. Our eyes and brains also benefit from eating foods high in omega-3 fatty acids – grab a handful of walnuts.

Enjoy the summer days ahead. Before you head out, remember your hat, water bottle, sunglasses and a piece of fruit. Onward to your next adventure!

Marilyn Halpern is the founder and executive director of Aspen Care Services. This
locally owned business provides medical power of attorney, care management and
professional guardianship services in the Denver Metro area. For more information visit www.aspencareservices.com or www.aginglifecare.org. Image credit: Gemma Taylor

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