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Home » What's New » The Optometrist Recommends: Eat Carrots for Eye Health

The Optometrist Recommends: Eat Carrots for Eye Health

Do carrots really improve eyesight? While optometrists affirm that carrots are made up of large amounts of a vitamin that has proven to be very good for the eyes, carrots do not substitute for suitable corrective eye care.

Beta-carotene is a carotenoid, or orange pigment that converts into vitamin A after it's digested in the human body. Vitamin A helps to guard the surface of the eye (cornea) and has been determined to prevent various eye diseases such as macular degeneration. Vitamin A, a group of antioxidant compounds, guards the surface of the eye to reduce the risk of ocular infections and other infectious illnesses. Vitamin A is also known to be an effective solution for dry eyes and other eye disorders. A lack of this important vitamin (which tends to be more common in poor and developing countries) often causes night blindness, corneal ulcers and retinal damage which can contribute to total blindness.

There are two variations of vitamin A, which relate to the nutritional source from which they come. Vitamin A originating from an animal is called Retinol and can be found in foods such as beef, liver, whole milk or cheese. Vitamin A that is obtained from produce exists in the form of ''provitamin A'' carotenoids, which are converted to retinol after the nutrients are digested. In addition to carrots, carotenoids can be found in colorful fruits and vegetables such as oranges, sweet potatoes, spinach, kale and cantaloupes.

It is proven that through most forms, vitamin A is beneficial to your eyes as well as your total well being. Even though carrots won't correct corneal refraction which causes vision impairments, grandma was right when she said ''finish your carrots.''