The latest research suggests that a healthy heart may be the key to healthier eyes too. According to the study published in the journal ‘American Journal of Medicine’ there is a link between the two organs and keeping a healthy diet can reduce your chances of developing serious eye-related illnesses.
Maintaining a healthy nutritious diet and making sure to exercise regularly can not only help people function better but also can help prevent life-long ocular illnesses such as macular degeneration which has age-related links, diabetic retinopathy, cataracts, and glaucoma.
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The key to a healthier future life is to keep your cardiovascular system healthy and robust by exercises such as running, which can aid in reducing heart disease risks as well and reduce risks of strokes.
The published study discovered that a healthy heart is directly linked to having healthy eyes, this is particularly important for runners who need to focus on their environment when they are running on trails and roads.
The data for the research comes from 6,000 adult volunteers who were mostly over the age of 40. The study took 3 years to complete, during this period, the researchers studied the health and nutrition of the volunteers. Participants of the study were expected to list information on things like blood pressure, physical activity, diet, cholesterol, smoking habits, and body mass index.
A researcher from the study revealed that even if a single one of such factors were changed for the worse, they had the power to negatively influence a person’s health and places them at an increased risk for cardiovascular and ocular illnesses. As these factors multiplied the researchers found, so did the risks attached. They concluded that if interventions were taken to prevent heart diseases, one can simultaneously have a positive impact on the eyes as well.
Duke Appiah was the lead researcher on the study; he is also a professor at Texas Tech University. He believes tackling these issues and encouraging healthier behaviors such as exercise and proper nutrition is only the right way to go about reducing chronic disease risk in people. He emphasizes that it hits two birds with one stone and doing so one can also prevent eye-related illnesses that are usually missed in their early days of development.
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Age-related health concerns like macular degeneration, which happens when the middle part of a person’s retina known as the macula degenerates and affects vision in people immensely. Around 2.2 billion individuals suffer from eye-related illnesses globally, the study reports and suggest that such diseases had the power to be prevented if the individuals have a different lifestyle.
If one wishes to maintain a healthy heart and healthy eyes, they should quit smoking altogether. Other strategies include maintaining a healthy weight, having a healthy cholesterol level, and controlling sugar levels in your blood.
Appiah believes if ophthalmologists and optometrist incorporate this knowledge into their practice and discuss heart health with their patients while cardiologists discuss the health of a patient’s eyes; there may be hope for the future of people who may otherwise suffer from such health conditions.