Eye garden is quite a spectacle

The Perfect Site For Sore Eyes

Those who follow our social media will have noticed some posts recently talking about our eye garden. We have been nurturing our eye garden since the early spring and bringing along some beautiful and tasty plants.  These plants provide all sorts of nutrients which are so good for eye health such as vitamins C and E, lutein and zinc which might help ward off age-related vision problems like macular degeneration and cataracts.

Our Vegetable “eye” Patch

We’ve been inviting local people to come and help themselves to our delicious vegetables and herbs. Not only do they look fabulous, brightening up our little practice, they are all really good for eyes. So here’s a quick rundown of this years crop and what each plant does for your eyes.

Tomatoes

It’s no accident tomatoes are dubbed a superfood, they are a big eye health vegetable. Tomatoes contain calcium, vitamin C, vitamin K, some B vitamins and vitamin A which produces beta-carotene including lutein and lycopene which are really good for preventing macular degeneration.

Carrots

Carrots contain lots of beta-carotene and Vitamin A, which can contribute to eye health and provide a fantastic source of eye vitamins for macular degeneration and cataract sufferers. Rhodopsin is also abundant in carrots, it’s really good for the retina and is a pigment that helps us see in low light situations. It’s true, carrots really do help us see better in the dark.

Peas, Beans, and Greens

Beans and Peas add zinc to our diet. Zinc helps release vitamin A from the liver so that it can be used in eye tissues. Meanwhile, a zinc deficiency can cause deterioration of the macula, in the centre of the retina. Kale is so good for eye health, although we didn’t do too well with it. The blooming caterpillars have eaten the lot, so they must have really healthy eye now! Kale, Red and dark green Cabbage (They’ve eaten that too) and dark Lettuce all contain lutein and zeaxanthin, both are important nutrients that have antioxidant functions in the eye, they help to prevent cell damage. We have lutein and zeaxanthin as pigments in the retina at the back of the eye.

The Herb Garden

Basil is a wonderful source of Vitamin A and Vitamin C. Good amounts of other nutrients that can be found in holy basil are dietary fibre, potassium, manganese, magnesium, calcium, iron and zinc. The vitamin A in the basil is superb in upholding the health of the eyes. It averts diseases, like night blindness. Parsley again contains Vitamin A which helps prevent illness by fighting bacteria and viruses. This vitamin also prevents infection in the eyes and dry eye disease.  In addition to the vision benefits of beta-carotene and vitamin A, a tablespoon of parsley contains 211 micrograms of lutein and zeaxanthin. These are carotenoids with antioxidant benefits for eye health. Their job is to counteract cellular damage from environmental exposure to harmful light rays. This exposure can result in the development of macular degeneration. Increasing the amount of lutein and zeaxanthin you eat can decrease the risk of developing cataracts.  

Growing Meltham

We are now working with Edible Meltham a local group who are encouraging us all in the area to ‘grow our own’ fruit, vegetables and herbs. The group runs numerous community projects, with seed distribution, local beds and lots of fun activities for all ages.

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