August: Hone Your Eye Health

August 8th, 2013 · No Comments · Hanna Kroeger, Healthy Living, Herbs for

Iris_-_left_eye_of_a_girlHow fast do you think your last blink was? Did you even notice you were doing it? Are you blinking even more now that we’re talking about it? As insignificant as your last blink seems, the rapid closing and opening of the eyelid is an essential function of the eye and your vision. The average blink lasts about a tenth of a second, but serves as a cleaning mechanism for the cornea and conjunctiva of the eye. By adding tears to your eyes’ surface, blinking keeps the eyes moist. The muscles that control the eye lid are stimulated by the central nervous system. They body blinks automatically; you don’t need to add it to your to do list. This is why staring contests can be so difficult!

Blinking is only one of numerous essential eye functions. An extremely complex system, the human eye needs to be constantly nourished to maintain proper function. Nourishment is carried to the eye by blood; good nutrition is vital to eye function.

August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month

kids_eyeWith school starting, August is the perfect time to check in on children’s eye sight. As children progress through the school system, they gain skills that test their vision on new levels: preschoolers learn to draw, first graders learn to read the chalkboard and open books, and each year the font in their textbooks is finer. Depending on the school, more than 80% of learning can be visual. Vision changes quickly during developmental years, which makes an annual eye exam important. Eye exams should be scheduled on a regular basis when children are young, regardless of vision concerns. Many schools make eye exams a part of their orientation for this very reason. If your child is suffering from poor vision, you may be interested in reading Better Eyesight Without Glasses, by William Bates.

Supporting Eye Health with Good Nutrition

Carrots are widely known as eye food- full of beta carotene, a Vitamin A precursor. Carrots may help address dry eyes, inflammation, and reduce the risk of macular degeneration. Carrots are not a catch-all for good vision, however. A complete diet is essential to eye health, and many other foods are equally helpful in boosting vision. Read this article on food for vision, or try supplementing your day with a few of these:

Saffron: A typical Spanish spice, saffron contains antioxidants that prevent UV damage in the eyes. A compound called crocin is found in saffron, and can help patients suffering from cataracts. Read natural ways to treat cataracts.

Milk Thistle: High in Silymarin, a bioactive compound, Milk Thistle may help support the liver. The liver plays a vital role in repairing eyes from UV damage.

Bilberry: This blue berry has been used to treat eye complaints for centuries. Anthocyanosides give bilberries their rich color and scavenge for free radicals. Bilberry supplements replenish the rods in your eyes, and are thought to improve night vision. Patients with glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy have found relief using bilberry. Try Bilberry Complete Concentrate or the Bilberry and Eyebright blend by Oregon’s Wild Harvest.

Gingko biloba: An adaptogen, Gingko biloba serves many functions and helping to prevent macular eye degeneration is one of them. Fading vision is one of the first signs of aging. Read more about adaptogens, or try our Gingko Biloba Complete Concentrate.

cayenneEndive: Myopia, commonly known as nearsightedness, may be helped by Endive Juice. A leafy vegetable, endive is extremely rich in vitamin A, K, and folate.

Cayenne: bright red and spicy, cayenne will get your blood pumping faster. As your heart rate picks up, so will your circulation. This spice is said to increase circulation to your eyes. Cayenne is easy to take in a capsule and the ground spice can be added directly to food!

Garlic: rich in sulfur, garlic will boost your body’s production of glutathione. Glutathione plays a role in cleaning crystalline substances off of the lens.

eyeformEye Formula is a supplement that contains several herbs. Designed specifically for eye health, this formula helps you meet your eyes’ daily vitamin needs.

Dry, itchy eyes? Find natural relief.

To learn more about eyes and eye health, please visit Hanna Herb Shop’s Natural Eye Care article.



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