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Blog posts tagged with 'healthy eyes'

Protecting your eyes from the sun - 0 Comments

Which rays do the sun emit and how much are we exposed to?

The sun emits different light components that consist of visible light, infrared light and ultraviolet radiation. Ultraviolet radiation is what we need to protect ourselves from, especially Ultraviolet A (UVA) and Ultraviolet B (UVB) as they do manage to reach the earth’s surface unlike Ultraviolet C (UVC) rays. Though the atmosphere does its best to protect us - we too have to do our part. 


How can the sun affect our eyes?

Just as much as we protect our skin from too much exposure to the sun that can cause sunburn, skin cancer and even wrinkled dull skin, our eyes are equally affected. Too much exposure to UV rays can increase our risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration. Research has confirmed that UVB light is directly related to the development of cataracts. Furthermore, it can cause tissue elevations on the surface of the eye called pinguecula and pterygia. AND yes! Eye sunburn is real - officially called photokeratitis where the cornea and conjunctiva are affected, it presents with symptoms of eye pain, redness, blurry vision, watery and gritty eye sensation. Too much UV exposure can also cause skin cancers of the eyelids. 


The below image is showing a pingecula, which presents as a yellow sometimes transparent raised tissue on the white part of the eye due to excessive and prolonged exposure to the sun.



The above image is showing a pteryguim which is a tissue growing towards the cornear due to excessive and prolonged exposure of UV rays.


How can we protect our eyes from the sun? 

Sunglasses, sunglasses, sunglasses!!! Just as you protect your skin with sunscreen, sunglasses work just the same especially because you can’t apply sunscreen on your eyes right? Your eyes are even more delicate, so sunglasses with UVA and UVB protection would be life-changing for anyone. Wrap-around sunglasses or sunglasses with side panels can help block almost all rays from the sun. 

As an FYI, you are still exposed to UV rays even on a cloudy day as they can penetrate through so avoid looking directly into the sun or exposing yourself more than necessary. 

In summary, investing in a quality pair of UV protective sunglasses is also investing in a healthy pair of eyes. Sunglasses offer sun protection while keeping you cool and styled up as a bonus. Or you can get Torga Optical UV420 blue light protection glasses at a discounted rate.

https://www.torgaoptical.co.za/uv420-blue-light-protection-voucher use this link to redeem your voucher to use in store!



This blog post was compiled with information provided by Nonhle Nxumalo, a qualifed and registered optometrist. 

A Feast for your Eyes - 0 Comments
A Feast for your Eyes

Having healthy eyes is something that many take for granted. But when one doesn’t have it, one’s quality of life is severely compromised.

Just like diet can have a direct impact when it comes to reducing the risk of various diseases, so can diet reduce the risks of developing numerous eye maladies. Many scientific studies have proven that nutrition has a massive effect on vision issues and vision-related diseases including dry-eyes, glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration.

So, in the interests of maintaining good eye health, we’ve made it easy for you by listing the five best food groups that, if consumed healthily, will help to preserve your vision.

  1. Antioxidants, antioxidants, antioxidants!

Yes, this has been a buzz word for what seems like forever – but, for good reason.

Vitamin C

Found in many easily accessible fruits (think citrus and berries) and vegetables, vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is an antioxidant that shows to significantly lower the risk of developing cataracts. Combine vitamin C with other essential nutrients, it has been scientifically shown to also slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration and the loss of visual acuity.

Vitamin E

Nuts, sweet potatoes and fortified cereals are an excellent source of another powerful antioxidant: vitamin E. Research indicates it protects cells in the eyes from unstable molecules called free radicals, which break down healthy tissue.

  1.    Nutrients: Lutein & Zeaxanthin

Lutein and zeaxanthin are important nutrients found in green leafy vegetables (such as kale and spinach) and yellow vegetables, as well as in the yolks of eggs. Many studies show that lutein and zeaxanthin reduce the risk of chronic eye diseases, including age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma and cataracts.

  1.    Vitamin D

Do you suffer from dry eye syndrome? Pretty much anyone who uses a digital device will probably experience dry eyes from time to time. Dry eyes are a common symptom of digital eye strain, which has become so commonplace that it's even been given its medical term: Computer Vision Syndrome. When one is reading off of a screen, the eyes have to constantly refocus and reposition to the process content. As a result, one doesn't blink as often. Blinking moisturises the front of the eye. The average person blinks around 16 times per minute. This is halved when using a digital device.

Diet can help to add extra moisture to the eyes to alleviate this modern-day malaise. Just add the following to your diet: fatty fish (like tuna, mackerel, and salmon); foods fortified with vitamin D, like some dairy products, orange juice, soy milk, and cereals, as well as liver, cheese and egg yolks. And of course, drink lots and lots of water!

  1. Essential Fatty Acids

Fats are a necessary part of the human diet. They maintain the integrity of the nervous system, fuel cells and boost the immune system. Research shows Omega-3 fatty acids are important for proper visual development and retinal function. Fatty acids also work very effectively to alleviate dry eyes. Nuts, seeds, soy products, beans, whole grains, and leafy vegetables all contain varying amounts of essential fatty acids.

  1.     Zinc

Zinc is an essential trace mineral or "helper molecule." It plays a vital role in bringing vitamin A from the liver to the retina to produce melanin, which is the protective pigment in the eyes. Zinc is highly concentrated in the eye, mostly in the retina and choroid (the vascular tissue layer lying under the retina). So, start adding grass-fed beef and lamb to your diet; oysters are also a good source of zinc; more nuts and luckily lots dark chocolate.


There's no substitute for the quality of life that good vision provides! By just adding a few of the above-mentioned ingredients to your daily diet you can improve your eye health.

Speak to one of the professional Torga optometrists for more insights into the health of your eyes. 

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