Post in collaboration with Vision Direct
We are all aware of the many health benefits of exercise. But did you know that regular exercise is also good for your eye health? No, I didn’t either. I always naively assumed that your eyes somehow did their own thing and that the best way of looking after them was simply not to spend too long in front of screens and make sure you don’t read in the dark. But regular exercise is great for your eyes, which I suppose makes sense when you stop to consider that the body really does work together as one unit.
Needless to say, you can see why I’m not a doctor!
Your eyes receive the same benefits as the rest of the body during exercise
The American Academy of Ophthalmology point out that eye disease is linked to health problems like high cholesterol
levels, diabetes and high blood pressure and exercise limits these problems from happening. So that thirty minute of exercise a day isn’t just good for your heart, it’s good for your eyes!
There are connections between those who regularly exercise and reduced chance of developing cataracts, wet aged-related macular degeneration and glaucoma
The Academy points out that people who engage in moderate physical activity are 25% less likely to develop glaucoma than those who are less active. Moderate physical exercise such as going for a walk three times a week has also been known to lower your intraocular pressure (IOP) and improve blood flow to the retina and optic nerve.
Those who exercise regularly are 70% less likely to develop wet age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) compared to those who led sedentary lifestyles (webmd.com)
According to Science Daily, those who are physically active are likely to be biologically younger than those with a sedentary lifestyle. As ARMD is age related, it makes sense to try to keep going with regular exercise. Regular walkers are 30% less likely to develop this condition.
Exercise can help you manage existing conditions
It’s an unfortunate fact that one of the complications of diseases like diabetes is loss of sight. Regular exercise can help to keep the disease under control, reducing the risk of complications like diabetic retinopathy, a leading cause of vision loss.
My exercise of choice might be running, but there are many things you can do to see the health benefits. Regular walking, stair climbing, dancing and other activities that raise your heart rate are all fantastic ways to help your eyes keep healthy.
Don’t forget, it’s really important to get regular check ups for our eyes. Opticians are often able to pick up on a potential health problem during routine eye checks. If this happens, it’s important to make an appointment with your GP as soon as you can. And don’t forget, whether you spend a lot of time in front of a screen, or are already a glasses wearer, it’s important to get your vision checked on a regular basis to make sure that there haven’t been changes to your vision. Many employers provide vision test vouchers to their employees if they spend a lot of time in front of a screen and with websites such as Vision Direct offering convenient and affordable way of filling a prescription, there is no excuse for not looking after your eyes.
Now, I’m off to make an appointment as I’m well over due a test myself!