It’s a new year! It’s once again a year of new challenges, possibilities, and opportunities. And in 2023, we see a bright future on the horizon – bright, that is, because we’re starting the year with health in mind. With January being the Eye Health Month, we have prepared a blog that sheds light on the oft ignored matter of eye health.
There are many more things you can do to keep your eyes in tip top shape, and let us show you how!
Know Your History
You can be forgiven for not knowing enough of your family’s medical history. After all, it’s not really something you focus on a lot of the time. But knowing your family’s medical history is crucial, as it will help you better choose which healthy habits you can adopt to accommodate to your family’s medical predispositions.
For example, if your family has a history of chronic illness, such as diabetes, you now have the option to change your lifestyle and food choices in order to prevent diabetes, since you now have this crucial information. You can even go to regular screening tests and reduce the likelihood of you catching and suffering from diabetes by making conscientious choices in your everyday life.
In the case of diabetes, you can now go to your doctor and ask what diet or lifestyle you will have to adopt to avoid it, or to avoid something like Diabetic Retinopathy, a complication of diabetes that can cause vision loss and blindness. 
This is just one example of the beauty of knowing your family’s medical history.
Eat Right, Protect Sight
The journey to better health almost always starts with a healthy diet. Even in the case of eye care, the best way to be more conscientious of our eye health is to make sure that we are eating what we need to keep our eyes healthy.
Nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zinc, vitamin C and E are just some essential vitamins that can benefit our pursuit to healthier eyes and clearer vision.  And NOW Foods has supplements that can give us the nutrients we need for healthy eyes.
NOW Foods Ultra Omega-3, while also an essential nutrient for the heart, is also a great supplement in keeping our eyes healthy. While our NOW Foods Lutein supplements are responsible for protecting the eyes against sunlight-induced free radical production.
You might be thinking that there’s not a lot of need to wear sunglasses, especially when you’re already used to the brightness of the sun. In fact, sunglasses don’t much factor in the conversation of protecting one’s self against potentially harmful UV rays. There is a clamour for sunscreen and light, airy clothes to beat the heat, but sunglasses aren’t usually part of the conversation.
Well, when it comes to protecting the eyes, sunglasses might need to be part of the conversation. They protect the eyes against ultraviolet (UV) light. This is important because, though we do not always think about it, UV light can cause harmful (even long-term) negative effects on the eyelid, cornea, lens, and retina. 
Not to mention the fact that UV light is present no matter the weather condition and can even be more harmful whenever you are near a body of water, given that light is reflected back on the surface of a body of water. 
All in all, it is best to wear your shades whenever you have a chance to do so. Not only do they add a dash of style to your wardrobe, you’re also keeping your eyes healthier for longer.
Beware the Blue Light
It’s no secret staring too long on our devices causes eye fatigue. This is caused by something called “blue light.” While our eyes are equipped with its own protective layers to protect our light-sensitive retinas, it’s not really equipped to keep blue light out. Given that we are now, more than ever, exposed to blue light, there becomes a need to keep watch and maintain our exposure to it.
In a 2020 study by the Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, it was found that, during the COVID-19 lockdowns, 32.4 percent of the study population was exposed to blue-light emitting devices for 9 to 11 hours per day, while some 15.5 percent were exposed for 12 to 14 hours a day. 
Blue light is also the leading cause of eyestrain, given that a lot of the working class population work their jobs sitting in front of computers for 8 hours on the regular. To combat the effects of blue light, NOW Foods has Lutein and Zeaxanthin supplements which are known to provide the body with carotenoids, an antioxidant that has a unique molecular structure that can soak up intense blue light wavelengths. 
Visit Your Doctor
It’s true what they say that prevention is better than cure, in the case of your eye health (and any and all health concerns), it is always best to consult with the professionals. The CDC recommends that, even though we might think our eyes are just fine, there are still many unknowns about our eye health that sometimes, only a comprehensive dilated eye exam can pick up.
Common vision problems are more often than not ignored until it is too late, in fact, some people don’t realise until later in their lives that they could see better with glasses or contact lenses. In addition, some eye problems present with absolutely no warning signs, so the best way to catch them early is by taking the time to visit your doctor in advance.
To maintain good eye health, you can even opt to take NOW Foods Vitamin A supplements to ensure the healthy maintenance of tissues in the eyes, or take NOW Foods Zinc supplements, which help move Vitamin A from the liver to the retina to produce melanin, which in turn protects the eyes against harmful UV light.