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Remembering Kevin Moore

Glaucoma Improved By Adding Omega-3 Fats To Your Diet


Omega 3 fatty acids could help eliminate glaucoma naturally

One of the most ignored parts of our body in our healthy lifestyle routine has got to be our eyes. This vital source of sight is often neglected until there are problems that require correction such as glasses or even surgery for more serious conditions. But did you know your diet and supplements can be an excellent way to bring about improvements in your eyesight?

We already know that a high-carb diet accelerates the development of advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a condition that is the #1 cause of blindness in people over 50. The researchers in some studies conclude that simply lowering carbohydrates in the diet would have likely prevented the condition from developing completely.

There’s another eye problem that an aspect of livin’ la vida low-carb can help with as well. It’s called Glaucoma, a condition where very high pressure builds up in the eye leading to damage in the optic nerve. Sometimes people don’t even know they have glaucoma until it gets to the point where nothing can be done about it since the optic disk endures irreparable harm. This is why routine eye exams are so important for people over 40.

Some symptoms to be on the lookout for if you suspect you have Glaucoma include blurry vision, poor night vision, blind spots, a loss of peripheral vision, halos around lights and eventually complete blindness. Regular visits to your eye doctor can catch this condition long before it reaches the advanced state.

So what treatments actually work? Many optometrists and ophthalmologists prescribe professional eye drops and prescription drugs to alleviate the pressure build-up with varying degrees of success. Of course, surgery is also becoming more and more common once the condition becomes too unbearable even with conventional treatments.

But what about something natural that does not involve risky surgeries or drugs of any kind to treat Glaucoma? Does anything like that exist? It sure does and it’s called omega-3 fatty acids (something you should already be consuming as part of your healthy low-carb lifestyle). Omega-3s contain an important ingredient called docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) which is vital both to eye health and brain functioning. The omega-3 fats also have eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and alpha-linolenic acid which are also ingredients critical for optimum health. Increasing your omega-3s will also help balance out the overabundance of omega-6 fatty acids which lead to a whole host of health issues if left unchecked.

High-doses of vitamin C (as much as 2g/day) have also been found to have a positive effect on eye pressure in people with Glaucoma. Ginghko biloba as high as 120mg per day relieves vision problems associated with Glaucoma. Consuming 150 mg daily of alpha lipoic acid improves visual function, too. Melatonin and magnesium both offered minimal improvements in vision as well, so they’re worth taking as part of your preventative measures against Glaucoma.

Although there has been very little research conducted specifically on the use of omega-3 fatty acids to treat Glaucoma, the benefits have already been noted in a variety of eye conditions, including retinal problems and AMD. More extensive human studies in this area are sure to be forthcoming with all the positive developments happening in patients placed on a high omega-3 regimen.

However, there was this study published in February 2007 from researchers out of Melbourne, Australia that suggested adding omega-3s to your diet will lead to lower intraocular pressure that results from many people with Glaucoma. Lab rats were given a very high dosage of omega-3 fatty acids from safflower oil, flaxseed oil, and tuna oil along with a control group of rats placed on the omega-3 deficient safflower oil. The results? The high omega-3 rats experienced a 13 percent decrease in eye pressure. AMAZING, huh? It’s yet another reason why we should all be getting more omega-3 fats in our diet.

What are some good sources of omega-3 fats we can include in our diet and supplements? Let’s list some of the most common for you:

–Fish oil and cod liver oil
–Salmon
–Flax seeds
–Walnuts
–Hemp seeds
–Green leafy veggies
–Broccoli
–Cabbage
–Cauliflower

To look for a reliable eye care professional, optician and neighborhood optometrist in your area to have your eyes checked out, please visit visit the LensShopper directory. Don’t forget about your eyes as part of your ongoing pursuit of a healthy lifestyle!

  • Michael Edson, MS, L.Ac.

    The excessive level of high refined carbohydrates in the American diet has contributed to a wide range of diseases including heart disease, diabetes and autoimmune diseases.

    More research is proving that the underlying cause or at least contributor to many diseases (including eye diseases such as macular degeneration) is chronic inflammation, which diets high in refined carbohydrates contribute to. Also, the importance of having high quality oils in our diet and avoiding vegetable oils and transfatty acids are essential to maintaining good health and eyesight.

    It is believed that the visual system requires up to 25% of the nutrients we take into our bodies in order to stay healthy. Impaired circulation and/or poor absorption of nutrients can significantly contribute to eye disease.

  • Hybrid carbohydrates are the exact same thing as refined carbohydrates and have the exact same effect. — Sugar is sugar is sugar! — Be it fruit or starch or dairy or anything else. — Now we are at the heart of the matter!

  • Omegas are good for so many things. Good to know this is another benefit.

  • Greentree2

    Jimmy, I have worked in the eyecare field for 19 years now. My boss is an optometrist and has been prescribing omega 3’s for years, even before it was popular in the mainstream media. Thank you for addressing this in your blog.

    WOW, Tina, that is AWESOME!!! Glad to know the message is already out there.

    –Jimmy