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Making these dietary changes can help you prevent dry eyes

dry eyes. The glands in the eye do not produce enough tears or the tears evaporate too quickly. The lack of balanced lubrication results in eyes that are red, itchy and burn. Here are some natural remedies to get rid of dry eyes suggested by Ms Shalini Arvind, Chief Dietician, Fortis Hospital, BG Road, Bangalore.

Drinking more water can help dry eyes. Dry eyes may be a signal that your body is dehydrated. People who work in an air conditioned environment often neglect their body’s need for the water.The recommended amount of water is 8-10 glasses or 2 litres every day. However, you may have to drink more than the recommended amount to get relief from dry eyes, especially if you regularly drink such as coffee or other caffeinated beverages or live in a dry or windy climate. Sufficient water is vital for our body systems to function and necessary for our eyes to produce tears. Tears keep the mucous membrane covering the eye, the conjunctiva, moist and contain a neutralizing enzyme that combats infection. For optimal relief from dry eyes, drink the recommended amount of water every day.

Omega 3 fatty acids and essential fatty acids help in the drainage of intraocular fluid from the eye and prevent glaucoma and high eye pressure. They also protect the eyes from dry eye syndrome and macular degeneration. You can add foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids like flaxseed oil, fish oil, chia seeds, walnuts, fish roe (eggs), fatty fish, seafood, soybeans, and spinach to your daily diet.

Potassium is an essential nutrient for the health of the cells throughout your body. People with dry eyes often have low potassium levels. Sources of potassium are sweet potatoes, spinach, tomato puree and juices, bananas, dry fruits and nuts, citrus fruit juices, tender coconut water and ragi(finger millet). You can also follow these expert tips to deal with dry eyes.

 B vitamins
All vitamins are equally essential for the eyes, vision and tear film.
Vitamin B6 and folic acid are intimately connected to the remodelling and repairing of tissue. Additionally, the mucous membranes of the eye have a high requirement for folic acid. You can get all the B vitamins from lean meat, eggs, fish, poultry, whole grains, mushrooms, sunflower seeds, butter fruit, broccoli, bananas(B6) legumes, and dark green vegetables.

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and a major part of the body’s immune system. When taken along with zinc and beta-carotene, it lowers the risk of age-related macular degeneration. It also prevents cataracts. Some of the sources are Sunflower seeds, vegetable oils, spinach, ground nuts, butter fruit, almonds, broccoli and fish.

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