Gardening for eye health

Hello and Happy Springtime! This month I am going to be talking to you about gardening. Yes, you read that correctly, your local Optometrist is going to be talking to you about gardening! There is a link – I promise.

There are plenty of seeds you can sow at this time of year, but by far the most important as far as your eyes are concerned is kale. Kale contains high levels of lutein and zeaxanthin which are antioxidants found in high concentration at the macula (the part of the eye that is responsible for your fine detailed, central vision). Oxidants are thought to be partly responsible for speeding up cell degeneration at the macula, so a balanced healthy diet high in antioxidants can help prevent many eye conditions including macula degeneration (which is the leading cause of blindness in the western world).

Other fruits and vegetables that are particularly good for the eyes are red and yellow peppers, spinach, peaches, blueberries and avocado, but kale contains the highest of the relevant nutrients and grows very easily in our climate.

So why not pot up some kale seeds this spring? My personal favourites are Kale ‘Nero di Toscana’, ‘Dwarf green curled’ and ‘Scarlet’. Let me know your favourite recipes!