Eyes reveal the state of your general health. They are also one of the first parts of the body to show visible signs of ageing, or a lack of sleep or stress. The skin around the eyes is five times thinner than on the rest of your face and the eyes have to move 10,000 times a day using an incredible 14 muscles per blink. The first sign of ageing of the eye itself is presbyopia, when the eye begins to loose its elasticity, and near sight is affected. Although currently there is little that can be done other than wearing glasses there is evidence that suggests good nutrition, particularly antioxidents, can prevent and/or delay some conditions such as cataracts, age-related macular degeneration and glaucoma.
Among the anti-ageing antioxidents for the eye are vitamin C, E, the carotenoids – lutein and zeaxanthin (spinach) and ginkgo biloba. As with other areas of health you should eat lots of fresh foods and oil-rich fish, exercise, do not smoke as it takes nutrients from the body and affects the circulation. Blue green algae, high in beta-carotene, can also help. Some drugs may affect eye health and problems can be as a result of illness such as diabetes or glaucoma and it is therefore essential to have regular check-ups with a doctor.