· By Dr. Kaushal M. Kulkarni, M.D.
How Does an Active Lifestyle Help Keep Your Eyes Healthy
Most people know that exercise is good for you. From narrowing that waistline to staying healthy, or even just improving your sense of wellbeing, exercise is your friend. And the same goes for your eyes. Indeed, regular exercise coupled with a healthy diet is one of the best things you can do to ward off visual impairment and degenerative disease.
Eyes Benefits from Physical Exercise
Numerous studies over the past decades have found strong links between exercising regularly and reduced risks for certain common eye complaints, such as cataracts, dry eyes, and glaucoma. But why?
The answer is simple. Cardiovascular exercises that get your heart pumping can help maintain health blood pressure, which in turn alleviates many potential eye diseases. This also helps keep the retinal ganglion cells protected.
There’s more. Cardio exercises also increase the flow of blood to the optic nerves and the retina. This may improve eye function and vision, particularly if you have glaucoma.
At the same, high blood pressure and high cholesterol - both emblematic of a lack of exercise - can create vision problems and worsen eye diseases. Needless to say, regular exercise, alongside a healthy diet, can help you tackle both these issues.
Time to Get Active
The best thing in all this is that improving your eye health and vision does not require large amounts of exercise. It is possible to gain advantages from short cardio workouts. Often a simple 20-minute brisk walk around your local park is enough. If it is done more than 4 times a week, it can increase your pulse by as much as 25 percent.
Walking isn't for everyone. Some of us want something a little more high octane. If this is you, why not try swimming, running, boxing, dancing, bike riding, even horse riding or rowing. In fact, the list is practically endless. Anything that will get your heart pumping is good. There are also some health eye exercises you can do:
No matter what you choose to do, you will not only be benefiting your eyes, but you will be improving your physical and mental health too. It's a win-win situation. So, what should I do now?
- In case you haven't realized yet, you should make exercise a key goal of yours. No more excuses. Get out there. Alongside the benefits to your wellbeing, this increased exercise will decrease your risk of worsened eye health.
- Visit an opthamologist. Of course, exercise is good, but you should also schedule regular checkups with your doctor to make sure everything is running clockwork.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
1. Can eye exercises cure cataracts?
No, eye exercises cannot cure cataracts.
2. What's the best eye-healthy exercise plan?
You cannot go wrong with cardiovascular exercises. Think running, swimming and jogging, as long as you have no contraindications to that.
3. How can I strengthen my eye nerves?
There is no proven method to strengthen the nerves around your eye.
4. How do you slow down cataracts?
Exercise and diet may help. Eat lots of leafy greens, fis, fruits, nuts, and berries. If in doubt, consult an ophthalmologist.
5. How do you prevent cataracts from getting worse?
Diet, exercise, wearing sunglasses, and refraining from smoking are your best bets.
All in all, each individual needs a healthy mix of good physical activities and proper nutrients to keep their eyes healthy for the long run. Whether before or after your exercise, we suggest taking a healthy dose of eye vitamins to help aid in promoting great eye health.