Ocular Oranges – Healthy Fruit; Healthy Eyes

Fall is finally upon us, and we certainly don’t want to fall behind on our eye health. One color and fruit comes to mind for the fall season: Orange. Whether it’s Halloween, fall harvest, or the changing leaves, all of it screams orange! I’m here to tell you about how and why you should incorporate this eye-healthy fruit into your fall dishes and snacks.

Combating Cataracts & Macular Degeneration

In general, citrus fruits and berries are high in vitamin C, which reduces the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration (MD). MD is the deterioration of the macula, the small central area of the retina of the eye in charge of visual acuity. More specifically, oranges help regenerate other antioxidants such as vitamin E and improve the health of your eye tissue. In other words, eating oranges regularly will prepare your eyes for age-related visual deficiencies and strengthen their resilience to tissue damage.

Reducing The Risk of Eye Disease

Carotenoids, which are the compounds that give oranges their color, eye disease. In particular, this fruit is a great source of lutein and zeaxanthin, which are carotenoids that help absorb damaging blue light entering the eye. Eggs are also a great source of carotenoids, so a nice breakfast consisting of OJ and eggs would accomplish your eye-healthy goal of the day.

As for fall, as I mentioned, not only do oranges go along with the color scheme, but oranges add a nice tang to some harvest recipes. Anything from a spicy autumn punch to a warm cinnamon cider, oranges accent the season’s flavors, aromas, and ultimately answer a call to action when it comes to eye health. So, enjoy a fall cocktail this season with some orange juice or garnish, even a roasted turkey with orange, an orange spice black tea or candied citrus peels. As a tip (though this is more for your nose rather than your eyes), boil some diced oranges in a pot of water with a  teaspoon of cinnamon for a fresh, fall smell. And remember to bring oranges into your eye-healthy diet!