See the benefits of making a New Year resolution

Resolving to eat healthily, take regular exercise, quit smoking and reduce your alcohol consumption can not only help you look great and feel fitter it can also help you see better!

According to the Eyecare Trust – simply making the right lifestyle choices can preserve your vision and dramatically reduce your risk of developing a sight-threatening eye disease.

Eating a healthy diet can reduce your risk of suffering from many age-related eye conditions. Fruit and vegetables are packed full of vitamins and antioxidants which protect against conditions such as macular degeneration – the UK’s leading cause of blindness. Whilst cold water fish like sardines, mackerel or tuna are all excellent sources of DHA and Omega-3 fatty acids which can help in the treatment of dry eye and are beneficial for general sight preservation.

Regular exercise can reduce your risk of degenerative eye conditions. Recent research found that people with an active lifestyle were 70 per cent less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration than those that lead a sedentary lifestyle.

Aerobic exercise can also increase crucial oxygen supplies to the optic nerve. This can reduce intraocular ‘eye’ pressure and help control conditions such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.

Drinking too much alcohol interferes with your liver functions, which in turn, can reduce your levels of glutathione – an efficient antioxidant that can help protect against common eye diseases.

Iain Anderson, Chairman of the Eyecare Trust comments: “Lifestyle factors play a significant role in determining the long-term health of your eyes. Watching what you eat and stubbing out cigarettes can have a real impact on the quality of your vision.”

You could also halve your risk of age-related sight loss if your New Year’s resolution is to quit smoking. Tobacco chemicals damage the blood vessels behind the eye, increasing your risk of developing age-related macular degeneration. Smoking is also associated with other eye diseases such as cataracts.

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