How to Improve Eyesight Without Surgery

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Many people who are forced to rely on contact lenses or glasses to improve their vision long for a life without the assistance of these corrective lenses. While LASIK and other corrective surgeries can offer solutions to eye impairments, surgery may not be an option for everyone. There are certain medical conditions that are not conducive to eye surgery, and the medical or financial implications of the procedure can prove too much for some people to bear.

Add Beneficial Foods to Your Diet

  • Increase the amount of green, leafy vegetables in your diet. Spinach, broccoli, collard greens, kale and other green, leafy vegetables are high in carotenoids, in particular lutein and zeaxanthin. These powerful nutrients can help prevent eye deterioration and the development of cataracts.

  • Eat cold-water fish, such as salmon, tuna, haddock, cod and sardines to benefit from the omega-3 oils they contain. These oils can help make your eyesight clearer and treat macular degeneration.

  • Add an egg to your daily diet. Eggs, especially the yolks, will help to increase the amount of lutein and zeaxanthin in your body. Always consume eggs from pasture-raised chickens, which offer the most benefit because the chickens consume a diet high in nutrients.

  • Add even more carotene to your diet by eating several servings of avocados each week. Avocados are similar to leafy, green vegetables in that they provide the body with lutein, which helps to fight eye disease. They help to increase the amounts of carotenoids extracted from other foods, such as leafy, green vegetables, so you can serve yourself an extra-healthy meal by pairing avocados with spinach in a salad.

  • Give yourself a special treat of dark chocolate, as the dark variety of chocolate offers flavonoids, which are important for the protection of blood vessels in the eyes. Red wine can also provide these nutrients. Dark chocolate and red wine should be consumed in moderation.

Take Vitamins and Herbal Supplements

  • Take vitamin E and C daily to improve eyesight. Vitamin E helps to protect the retina and decrease the rate of macular degeneration.

  • Use bilberry extract to improve your eyesight and reduce the rate of deterioration. Bilberry contains anthocyanosides, which may help to slow the rate of macular degeneration and prevent retinal deterioration. Bilberry may also improve your ability to see at night.

  • Add a supplement of mahonia grape extract to your diet to strengthen capillaries found in the retina and slow the effect that aging can have on your eyes. This beneficial extract can also help protect your eyes from harmful UV rays found in sunlight.

  • Take ginkgo biloba if you want to reverse the effects of retinal deterioration. It can also increase the flow of blood and nutrients to the retina, which can help prevent further deterioration.

  • Use passionflower to ease the effects of frequent eyestrain. Passionflower works by relaxing the small blood vessels in the eyes.

Try Ortho-K

  • Invest in reshaping contact lenses that can help improve your vision. Ortho-k (orthokeratology) is effective for patients who are shortsighted, with a prescription up to minus six for patients with astigmatism, with a prescription up to -1.75.

  • Place the contact lenses in your eyes each night before going to bed. The lenses will reshape your corneas while you sleep.

  • Try the contacts for at least 2 weeks to allow your corneas a chance to respond to the reshaping lenses. The contacts usually require 2 weeks of nightly wear before vision improvement is noticeable.

  • Take out the contacts each morning. You should see an improvement in your vision that will last anywhere from 18 to 20 hours.

  • Reverse the effects of the lenses by discontinuing use of the reshaping lenses. Your eyes will return to their original prescription without the nightly wear of the contacts. LASIK is still an option if you decide to proceed with the surgery at a later time.

Tips & Warnings

  • Research reshaping lenses thoroughly to determine whether they will work for your situation. The lenses are fairly expensive because they require more of the doctor's time than normal lenses.
  • Use a reshaping lens that is FDA approved, such as Bausch & Lomb's Vision Shaping Treatment (see Resources below).
  • If you are unable to find bilberry, look for aspalathus, which offers antioxidants similar to bilberry.
  • Always see your eye practitioner regularly to make certain your eyes are healthy and you are seeing at an acceptable level. Do not proceed with herbal remedies without your doctor's advice.
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