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Home » What's New » The Optometrist Recommends: Eat Carrots for Healthy Eyes

The Optometrist Recommends: Eat Carrots for Healthy Eyes

We have all heard that carrots improve your eyesight, but is it the truth? Optometrists will tell you that carrots can't actually improve your vision. However, carrots are rich in beta-carotene, a vitamin that is very good for your eye health and therefore consuming carrots and other beta-carotene rich foods is clearly advised for maintaining eye health.

Beta-carotene is a carotenoid, or orange pigment that converts into vitamin A after it's absorbed in the human body. Vitamin A protects the cornea, or surface of the eye, and has been shown to be preventative for a number of eye diseases such as macular degeneration. Vitamin A, a group of antioxidant compounds, guards the surface of the eye to decrease the frequency of ocular infections and other infectious illnesses. Vitamin A has also shown to be a successful solution for dry eyes as well as other eye disorders. A lack of vitamin A (which is exist more in poor and developing countries) often causes night blindness, corneal ulcers and retinal damage which can lead to total blindness.

Two variations of vitamin A exist, which depend upon the food source they come from. Vitamin A originating from an animal is called Retinol and can be found in foods such as beef, chicken liver, or dairy products. Vitamin A that is fruit and vegetable-derived exists in the form of ''provitamin A'' carotenoids, which break down to retinol after the nutrients are digested. In addition to carrots, carotenoids can be found in colorful produce particularly those that are bright orange or green in color.

There is no doubt that vitamin A is beneficial to your eyes as well as your total well being. Although carrots themselves can't correct corneal refraction which causes vision impairments, mother had it right when she said ''finish your carrots.''