Friday, June 30, 2017

Reading Correctly for Better Vision

Biologically, you eyes are designed to adjust from close to distant focus, back and forth, continually. But, in reality, you focus your eyes for a long span of time at close distance when you read. This is one of the main causes of nearsightedness. Your vision health has much to do how you read.

Reading causes eyestrain, which results in the constriction of eye muscles. Prolonged eye muscle constriction distorts the shape of the eye. Eyestrain is due to the following conditions: 
  • Reading material being too close (less than 20 inches), and not parallel to the eye
  • Insufficient lighting or too bright artificial lights (fluorescent lights)
  • Poor posture in reading, such as slumping or neck-bending-downward position, leading to lengthening of the eyeball
  • Reading while eating: digestion drawing blood to the digestive system, thereby temporarily depriving the eye of nutrients 
To overcome eyestrain during reading, do the following:
  • Breathe naturally; do not hold your breath.
  • Take a meaningful break every 20 minutes or so, and blink your eyes repeatedly.
  • Make sure the lighting is sufficient. Inadequate light is the first factor that tires the eye.
  • Make sure the print is large enough.
It should be pointed out that speed reading may be damaging to the eye, because in speed reading the eye tends to take in a large visual field without focusing on any specific word. Remember, the macula can see small details only one at a time, that is, moving from one point to another. If the macula cannot focus, it does less work, leading to more blurry vision, which ultimately increases eyestrain—and thus a vicious circle of eyestrain and weak vision.
To enhance vision in reading, do the following to focus on the physical aspect of reading:

Occasionally read a page upside down, one letter at a time, moving from one point to another.

Increase your peripheral vision and stimulate your macula by wearing black cardboard paper to partially cover the eyes.

Adjusting the Eye to Light

Given that light is the essence of good vision, it is therefore important that you train your eyes to adjust comfortably to light, otherwise you may have a tendency to squint your eyes when the light is too bright or too dim.

Eye sunning

Sunning the eye is an exercise that utilizes the energy from the sun for healing the eye and improving vision. The healing power of sunlight should come into the eye at a diagonal angle, and the sunlight should not be too strong (i.e. early in the morning, before 10 a.m. and late in the evening, after 5 p.m.). 
  • Sit or stand outdoors, your body facing the sun. You can also sit or stand at an open window, but do not let the sun come through glass.
  • Close your eyes; do not wear sunglasses. Let the warm sunlight bathe your eyes.
  • Now, move your head slowly but constantly from side to side.
  • Breathe deeply and slowly.
  • Relax your head, shoulders, and eyes, while continuing the body motion.
  • Turn your back to the sun, and briefly palm your eyes for a few minutes during which you visualize black in your mind’s eye.
  • Return to the original position, and resume your eye sunning.
  • Alternate between sunning and palming. You will notice that during sunning, the color seems brighter, while the black seems blacker during palming.
  • Practice this for 10 to 20 minutes a day, if the weather permits.
 Sun flashing

Flashing stimulates retinal activity.    
  • Sit or stand with closed eyes facing the sun.
  • Spread your fingers apart, and wave your hands back and forth across each other in front of your closed yes.
  • Wave your hands more rapidly up and down past each other. You will see the interplay of darkness and light.
  • Do palming for a few minutes, while visualizing black.
  • Blink your closed eyes before you open them so they can readjust to light. 
It is important that you never look directly into the sun, and that you do not practice sunning when the sunlight is too strong so as not to damage the eye.

Do you know that your eyes are connected with your mind? You see not just through your eyes, but also through your mind!

Take care of your vision health!

To get your digital copy, click here; to get your paperback copy, click here

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Monday, June 26, 2017

Vision Nutrition 2

Balanced Acid-Alkaline to Combat Free Radicals

Your body cells need a balanced acid-and-alkaline environment to fight against free radicals. Acid and alkaline are substances that have opposing qualities. Your body functions at its best when the pH is optimum, which is slightly alkaline. The pH of your blood, tissues, and body fluids directly affect the state of your cellular health, in particular, that of the eye.

The pH scale ranges between one and fourteen. Seven is considered neutral. Anything below seven is considered acidic, while anything above seven is considered alkaline. Deviations above or below a 7.30 and 7.40 pH range can signal potentially serious and even dangerous symptoms, forewarning you of a disease in process.

When your body is too acidic, the tissues of your cells are forced to relinquish their alkaline reserves, depleting them of alkaline minerals, which are the components of the tissues themselves.

Over acidification comes from excess intake of foods containing great amounts of acid (animal proteins, sugar), and insufficient elimination by the body through the kidneys (urination) and the skin (sweating).

Alkaline foods contain little or no acid substances, and they do not produce acids when metabolized by your body. Alkaline foods include: green vegetables; colored vegetables (except tomato); chestnut; potato; avocado; black olives; bananas; dried fruits; almonds and Brazil nuts; alkaline mineral waters; cold-pressed oils (e.g. olive oil).

Alkaline medicinal plants also maintain the optimum pH level.

Black currant fruits are a good source of vitamin C and other vitamins and minerals, including an omega-6 fatty acid to increase blood flow to the eye.

Cranberry has been in use since the Iron Age, but the Romans were the first to recognize its medicinal values. Cranberry contains anti-asthmatic compounds, and is high in vitamin C and antioxidants. Eat fresh or dried cranberry, not the sugar-loaded cranberry juice obtainable in the supermarket.

Alkaline energy boosters can enhance your alkalinity to fight against free radicals.

Blackstrap molasses is an excellent source of iron and calcium, copper, magnesium, manganese, and potassium.
Make a healthy alkaline drink with a tablespoon of organic blackstrap molasses (mixed in some hot water first) and ¾ cup of soymilk. Add ice.

Cod liver oil, which comes from fatty fish, such as salmon and sardines, is rich in vitamin A and vitamin D, and essential omega 3 oils. It enhances the absorption of calcium and maintains a constant level of blood calcium. Cod liver oil improves brain functions and the nervous system, which play a pivotal part in vision health.

Alkaline supplements, such as coral calcium, can keep all mineral levels up, and each and every mineral in balance. Alkaline supplements should contain calcium (Ca), sodium (Na), silica and copper, and other minerals to aid de-acidification of the body. More importantly, they should contain every mineral in similar proportion to that found in the human body. Remember, the human body functions synergistically: the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Every mineral has its crucial role to play in the human anatomy, including the eye.

Essential Fatty Acids

The high consumption of foods loaded with saturated fats and cholesterol, as well as man-made fats in egg substitutes, margarines, and basked foods, has led to a host of age-related eye disorders, such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, and retinal vein occlusion, among others. The explanation is that the tiny blood vessels located in the eye may become easily clogged with fats and other deposits that may cause eye problems.

The omega-3 fats, on the other hand, are good fats that help the normal functioning of the eye:

Regulating eye pressure

Moistening the eye

Relieving spasms in the eyelids

Reducing the eye’s sensitivity to the sun
Boosting the immune system

The omega-3 fats are found in chestnuts, flax seed, northern beans, soy, walnuts, wheat germ, and fish, such as cod, mackerel, salmon, and tuna.

For the omega-3 fats to be potent in protecting against free radicals, they must be combined with antioxidants.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Vision Loss

Your eyes are one of the most important organs in your body. It is through your vision that you mainly perceive the world and what is happening around you. However, as you get into your golden years (that is 65 and beyond), you will have some deterioration in your vision. As a matter of fact, vision loss begins as early as in the 30s, and its initial deterioration is gradual and almost unnoticeable. But it begins to accelerate in the 40s and 50s. Now, if you are already in your golden years, you might have much impaired vision, especially they could have been aggravated by your decline in health, such as getting diabetes. Getting older will take its toll on your body in many ways and your vision loss is just one thing that will start to deteriorate noticeably with age.

Some of the obvious signs and symptoms of vision loss are: difficulty in focusing (slower and less accurate)—a condition known as presbyopia, which is caused by the hardening of the eyes’ lenses; difficulty in seeing either long or short distances—these eye conditions that are known as either nearsightedness or farsightedness.

Presbyopia will result in difficulty to read or doing work that requires accurate focus; nearsightedness or farsightedness may require you to wear bifocals or different eyeglasses.

Other problematic issues with vision loss include an increased risk of age-related eye diseases, such as glaucoma, macular degeneration and cataracts. These eye problems can lead to severe eyesight issues, even blindness, if they are not taken care of immediately.

In your golden years, take extra care of your vision health and eyesight issues to reduce the risk of blindness further down the road. Check your health, especially your eye health, on a regular basis. This may play a pivotal role in preventing further deterioration or even blindness. Prevention is always better than a cure. Eat a healthy diet to get all the nutrients to your eyes. Do eye exercises; if you exercise the muscles in your body, you should also exercise the muscles in your eyes, because they are responsible for your vision health. Use eye exercises to help correct nearsightedness, farsightedness or presbyopia. Eye exercises are easy and simple to do and you can even do them in your own home. For eye exercises to work, you must be persistent

Make sure that you have eye tests done at least twice a year and if you start to notice a decline in your ability to focus or see clearly.

Most vision problems, whether nearsightedness, farsightedness, or presbyopia, have to do with eye stress and strain affecting the shape of the eyes, and hence their capability to focus correctly. Of course, the eyes cannot be relaxed if the body and mind are not.

Your Golden Years and Santa Claus shows you the wisdom in happy and successful aging in the golden years. It is a holistic and comprehensive approach to dealing with vision loss and other health issues, as well as changes and challenges, encountered late in life.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

Monday, June 5, 2017

Diet to Treat Macular Degeneration

The macula is a small central part of the retina for detailed vision. Macular degeneration is a slow, progressive disease that affects both eyes, typically one after the other. Due to its slow development, macular degeneration may take years to be noticeable. Macular degeneration affects as many as 30 million Americans aged 65 and above. If you are 65, you have 25 percent of developing macular degeneration; your risk increases to 30 percent if you are over 75.

Macula degeneration may be due to various reasons

high cholesterol
 sun damage

According to conventional Western medicine, macular degeneration is incurable. But macular degeneration can be treated naturally with:

High doses of antioxidants and minerals from your diet: beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E, and zinc

Beta-carotene enables your body to convert plants into vitamin A and to boost normal cell reproduction in the eye, thereby protecting the eye from free radicals and improving night vision,

Vitamin C boosts and strengthens your immune system, and is a potent agent for making collagen to maintain healthy blood vessels in the eye.

Vitamin E is an antioxidant that protects cell membranes.

Zinc, a mineral required by more than 300 enzymes to repair wounds, optimizes vision health, and protects the eye from free radicals.

Remember, with the exception of vitamin D from sunlight, your body does not make your own vitamins and minerals; you must obtain the above from your diet. Antioxidants and vitamins and minerals are critical to vision health in preventing and treating generative diseases, such as macular degeneration.

Nutritional supplements: lutein, Taurine, DHA, and ginkgo biloba

Lutein, a carotenoid found in vegetables and fruits, such as collard greens, kale, and spinach, promotes vision health through its potent antioxidant properties.

Taurine promotes retinal health and improves nigh vision by transporting nutrients to the eye as well as eliminating toxic accumulation in the eye

DHA, an essential Omega-3 fatty acid, enhances the development of the retina.

Ginkgo biloba is an ancient Chinese herb for vision health.

For more information on vision health, read my book: Vision Self-HealingSelf-Help: to get the paperback edition, click here; to get the digital copy, click here.

Yes, macular degeneration is treatable. Albert Einstein once said: "There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle." Believe in a miracle cure, even for macular degeneration. Change your lifestyle and your diet. More importantly, change your mindset.   

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau