A cataract is the most common age-related eye disease that affects millions of elderly people around the world. While the exact cause of a cataract is unknown, experts believe that oxidative damage caused by free radicals can harm certain proteins in the eye’s natural lens, resulting in the clouding of the cornea.
While the importance of orange-colored foods has been highlighted in maintaining eye health and preventing several eye diseases, new scientific research suggests that leafy greens like spinach, kale and collard greens also have vision protective properties. [1,3]
Leafy Greens For Healthy Eyes
Along with other environmental, lifestyle, and inherited risk factors associated with cataracts, experts believe that exposure to ultraviolet radiation from sunlight and the stress it causes can be a major contributor to the condition.
Spinach and other dark, leafy greens are rich in lutein and zeaxanthine, two antioxidants that reduce the signs of ultraviolet damage.  According to a study published in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers studied the protective properties of lutein and zeaxanthin on human eye cells against the effects of ultraviolet radiation and found that they reduced the signs by 50 to 60 percent. .
How To Use Them
- Stir-fry your leafy greens for not more two to three minutes to retain their nutrition. Here’s how you can make Sautéed Spinach With Roasted Garlic.
- Another wholesome way is to include leafy greens in your soups and salads. Try out our Winter Squash & Spinach Soup recipe or make a nutritious Kale Salad With Maple-Mustard Dressing.
- You can also top your pizzas with them or include them in your sandwiches and smoothies.
1. Sulich A, Hamułka J, Nogal D. Dietary sources of lutein in adults suffering eye disease (AMD/cataracts). Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 2015;66(1):55-60. PubMed PMID: 25813074.
2. Ribaya-Mercado JD, Blumberg JB. Lutein and zeaxanthin and their potential roles in disease prevention. J Am Coll Nutr. 2004 Dec;23(6 Suppl):567S-587S. Review. PubMed PMID: 15640510
3. Moeller SM, Jacques PF, Blumberg JB. The potential role of dietary xanthophylls in cataract and age-related macular degeneration. J Am Coll Nutr. 2000 Oct;19(5 Suppl):522S-527S. Review. PubMed PMID: 11023002.