(NaturalHealth365) Vision is tied to general health, and health is tied to lifestyle. Cataracts are of all the vision problems the most likely related to lifestyle.
A cataract is a clouding up of the eye lens. Vision is not as clear, there is a frosty or fogged up appearance to the objects in view. The clouded vision caused by cataracts makes everyday tasks more difficult. This would be especially true in the evening when there isn’t enough light out. Most cataracts develop over a period of time. In fact in the early stages it doesn’t interfere with vision.
The very first clues are the need for stronger lighting and eyeglasses. As the cataracts progress these remedies aren’t enough. The most common symptoms are blurry vision, faded or yellowed colors, glare, compromised night vision, double vision, halos around lights and frequent prescription changes.
Types of Cataracts
Cataracts that affect the center of the lens are called nuclear cataracts, a nuclear cataract may cause you to become more nearsighted or perhaps experience short term improvement in your reading vision. In time the lens turns yellow and clouds visions. Some of the symptoms: seeing double or multiple images and difficulty distinguishing between shades of a color.
A cortical cataract begins as a whitish, wedge-shaped opacities or streaks on the outer edge of the cortex. As it progresses, the streaks reach the center and interfere with light going through the center of the lens. Symptom: problems with glare.
A posterior subcapsular cataract starts as a small opaque area, which usually forms behind the lens, in the path of light going into the retinal. Symptoms: interferes with reading, reduces vision in bright lights, and causes either glare or halos around lights at night.
Cataracts develop for a variety of reasons. It can develop in one or both eyes. As you age the lenses in your eyes become less flexible, less transparent and thicker. Age-related changes cause tissues to break down and clump together clouding areas of the eye.
Other causes diabetes, alcohol consumption, excessive exposure to sunlight, exposure to ionizing radiation the type used in x-rays and cancer radiation therapy, a family history of cataracts, high blood pressure, obesity, eye injury or inflammation, prolonged use of corticosteroid medications, and smoking.
Probably the biggest cause is lifestyle. A University of Wisconsin-Madison survey of more than 18,000 women found those with the lowest consumption of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains had the highest risk of developing cataracts.
Antioxidant vitamins and phytochemicals found in fruits and vegetables such as A, C, and E, lutein, and zeaxanhin can reduce the incident of cataracts. The consumption of fish a rich source of Omega 3 fatty acids also has been associated with a reduced risk of cataracts.
In a study published in Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science in June 2010, researchers in Australia found that a diet high in carbohydrates may increase cataract risk. Looking at the eating habits of more than 1,600 adults revealed that individuals who were in the top 25 percent for total carbohydrate intake had more than three times the risk to develop cataracts than those in the lowest 25 percent for carbohydrate intake.
Besides slowing down the progression of cataracts a diet high in antioxidants can reverse the process. The largest part of the standard American diet is processed foods. This means simple carbs and lots of sugar make up the largest portion of the diet. Both of these rob the body of vitamins and minerals. Eyes depend on nutrients just like every other system.
In another study of 2,400 plus older adults in Australia published in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in June 2008 found that high intakes of antioxidants reduced the incident of cataracts. To prevent and reverse cataracts, you need to increase alkalinity. A cataract can dissolve on its own. Women who had a higher intake of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are found in yellow or dark leafy vegetables had a lower risk for forming cataracts. This is reported in one of Jama/Archive journals.
Based on the idea that cataract formation happens because reactive oxygen is capable of damaging the lens proteins and antioxidants can protect against this process, it would seem that cataracts are in a large part lifestyle dependent.
So, if you can see your way to add plenty of produce to your diet you will insure that you will see clearly for years to come.
Abouit the author Blanche has been a student of natural healing modalities for the last 25 years. She had the privilege of working with some of the greatest minds in Natural Healing including Naturopaths, Scientist, and Energy Healers. Having seen people miraculously heal from all kinds of dis-ease through non-invasive methods, her passion now is to help people become aware of what it takes to be healthy