You can enjoy a range of foods that are good for your eyes if they’re rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants found in veggies like dark leafy greens (think spinach and kale), Brussels sprouts and corn. In one large-scale study, researchers discovered that women whose diets contained the highest amounts of these eye-healthy nutrients were 32 percent less likely to develop cataracts than those who ate the lowest.
Research suggests that exercise may help prevent glaucoma, which can damage the optic nerve. A British study of more than 5,600 adults found that those who exercised regularly (more than an hour each day) were 25 percent less likely to have low blood flow to their eyes — circulation issues are thought to be a cause of glaucoma — than their more sedentary counterparts.
Ultraviolet (UV) Radiation consists of invisible rays from the sun. The 3 bands of light are UVA, UVB and UVC. UVC rays are of little concern as they are absorbed by the earth’s upper atmosphere (ozone layer).
UVB rays, however, burn the skin (which can cause skin cancer) and damage the eyes. Although a lot of UVB is absorbed by the ozone layer, prolonged exposure does induce cataracts (lens clouding) and photokeratitis (corneal burning).
UVA is not at all blocked by the earth’s atmosphere, but thankfully is the least harmful to the human body, even though certain studies have shown links to cataract.
UV protection is particularly important for children, as they have larger pupils (letting more light in); this can account for 80% of all damage done in a lifetime before the age of 20.
Some glasses offer a polarized lens that eliminates glare from reflected light. Overall, it is so important to use sunglasses that are specifically aimed at eye protection from the UV rays – offering at least 98% absorption (not necessarily the expensive ones).
Due to the high level of concentration with computer work, we tend to stare at the screen, not blinking enough. This tends to dry out the eyes (particularly with contact lenses), causing them to be itchy, blurry and gritty. So remembering to blink properly, in conjunction with lubricating eye drops, should relieve this. A good tip is the 20–20–20 rule: Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds
According to the EC Directive, employees are entitled to a free annual eye examination and to be provided with basic spectacles, provided they are specifically for DSE use (generally single vision or varifocal lenses with an anti-reflective coating). It also recommends a 10 minute break every hour and changes of activity to reduce general visual fatigue. If we take on board all these considerations, it will most definitely enable us to pass through our working day with much greater ease.
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