Eyecare Business

AUG 2016

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40 E y e c a r e B u s i n e s s . c o m August 2016 randma always told you to eat your carrots because they're good for your eyes, but is it just an old wives' tale? Can what you eat really make a difference for eye health? "The short and sweet answer," says Allen Ho, M.D., "is yes, what you eat makes a dif- ference." Dr. Ho is a retina surgeon and the director of the clinical retina research unit at Wills Eye Hospital and a professor of ophthalmology at Thomas Jefferson University, both in Philadel- phia. According to him, the foundations of eating for eye health are simple: Eat a variety of colors every day. "Different colors of fruits and vegetables have different nutri- ents," he says. "[In] the eye and the macula there are substances called carotenoids, found in fruits and vegetables—carotene, lycopene, lutein, zeaxanthin. They act as antioxidants, long-chain organic compounds that can accommodate free radicals that are damaging, aging, and gene-modifying." So, Dr. Ho tells his patients to eat a diverse diet rich in nutri- ents, minerals, and micronutrients. The especially good news is that the foods that are good for eye health also tend to be good for you in general. They're high in fiber, antioxidants, and healthy fats that your body needs, so make sure to share this lineup with your patients—and add these 5 Eye-Healthy Foods Yes, carrots have gotten all the proverbial glory, but what are today's new, hot eye-healthy eats? V I S I O N 1 0 1 g

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