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Exercise can reduce glaucoma risk

Staying physically active has been known to help older adults combat a number of different conditions, and recent research suggests it may have benefits for your eyesight as well. A study published in the Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science journal found a connection between regular exercise and a lowered risk of glaucoma.

Specifically, the study looked at how exercise impacted the subjects' low ocular perfusion pressure (OPP), which is regarded as one of the greatest risk factors for developing glaucoma. The study looked at the health habits of 5,650 men and women between the ages of 48 and 90 by giving them a self-administered questionnaire about how much physical activity they got.

Combined with the participants' current OPP, the scientists came to the conclusion that cardiovascular exercise can significantly benefit eye health. The findings are especially important because previously, the only method available to stave off glaucoma was to treat intraocular pressure (IOP).

"Before now, the only modifiable risk factor for glaucoma was IOP, altered by medication, laser or surgery," study author Paul J. Foster said. "We believe our study points toward a new way of reducing glaucoma risk, through maintaining an active lifestyle. This is a way that people can participate in altering their risk of glaucoma and many other serious health problems."

In addition to regular exercise, experts say that you can help maintain your eye health through your diet. According to ecomii.com, some of the best foods for eye health are dark green leafy vegetables such as kale and spinach. If you're looking for a method that offers a little more sweetness, scientists say that citrus fruits including strawberries and oranges have ocular benefits as well thanks to their plentiful amounts of vitamin C.

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