What foods are good for your eyes?

What foods are good for your eyes?

This is Optrex’s guide to the foods which contains nutrients and vitamins that can help care for your eyes. This article also explores how supplements can help to support your normal diet.

It’s often said that a healthy diet is good for your body, but it’s rarely mentioned how eating well can also help look after your eyes.

Do carrots help you see in the dark?

Let’s start by taking a quick look at that famous old wives’ tale, linking carrots with enhanced night vision.

There’s one saying we all heard when we were children and our parents were encouraging us to eat up the veg: “Carrots help you see in the dark.”

So, is there any truth to this myth?

Well, yes and no. Carrots contain vitamin A, which is processed by the body to rhodopsin.  Rhodopsin indeed can help you see in low-light conditions but eating carrots won’t ever enable you to see in complete darkness¹.

The suggestion that they might was introduced by the Air Ministry during the Second World War. To prevent the Germans discovering that Britain was using radar to successfully target bombers on night raids, they issued press releases declaring that British pilots were eating lots of carrots to enable them to track down the bombers in the dark. Both the British public and the German High Command were fooled¹.

So, though that may be a myth, rest assured, the remainder of this article is based on science.

10 foods to care for your eyes

Eating well can do more than just benefit your waistline.

There are many foods that can help maintain the health of your eyes, and here’s our top-ten:

1. Fish

Fish contain omega-3 fatty acids such as DHA* which is scientifically proven to help maintain normal vision. Oily fish, such as tuna, salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines, anchovies and herring have particularly high levels of omega-3-rich fish oil.

2. Nuts

Omega-3 fatty acids such as DHA* are also present in nuts and present a vegan alternative to fish. Walnuts, Brazil nuts, cashews and peanuts are particularly rich in nutrients².

3. Seeds

Like nuts, chia seeds contain Omega-3 fatty acids and DHA*.

4. Citrus fruits

It’s well known that oranges, lemons, limes and grapefruits are rich in vitamin C.  Vitamin C is an antioxidant which helps protect cells from oxidative stress.

5. Broad-leaf green vegetables

Spinach and the increasingly-trendy kale both contain Vitamin A which helps maintain normal vision. 

6. Carrots

So, while they may not help you see in the dark, carrots are a source of beta carotene.  The benefits of beta carotene for the eyes are still uncertain, but it is known that your body needs beta carotene to make vitamin A which helps maintain normal vision².  

7. Sweet potatoes

Another orange vegetable, sweet potatoes are rich in beta carotene, which as mentioned above, your body needs to make vitamin A² which helps maintain normal vision.  Interestingly, it’s actually beta carotene that gives carrots and sweet potatoes their bright colour. This vegetable is also a good source of the antioxidant vitamin E² which helps protect cells from oxidative stress.

8. Beef

Good news for the Sunday roast! Beef is rich in zinc, which is scientifically proven to help maintain normal vision.  Chicken breast and pork loin also contain zinc, but not at the same high levels found in beef².

9. Eggs

They are an excellent source of zinc which helps maintain normal vision².

10. Water

Up to 60% of the human body is made up of water, so it won’t surprise you to hear that it plays a vital role in the health of your eyes. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day can prevent dehydration and reduce the symptoms of dry eyes².

How eye care supplements can help

Today, we are making our eyes work harder than ever; spending increasingly more time looking at screens or exposing our eyes to light.   

That’s why Optrex, the eye experts since 1932, have built on years of research understanding what’s best for our eyes.

Optrex has introduced two eye health food supplements to help you maintain normal vison*: Optrex ProVision and Optrex ProVision Plus.

Optrex ProVision is a scientifically formulated supplement that includes:

  • Lutein and Zeaxanthin which make up the macular carotenoids
  • DHA*, Zinc and Vitamin B2 to help maintain normal vision
  • Vitamin C which helps protect cells from oxidative stress
  • Magnesium which contributes to normal muscle function ⁴

Optrex ProVision Plus with the same minerals and nutrients as Optrex ProVision but also adds vitamin A and Evening Primrose Oil to the mix:

  • Vitamin A which has a role in the process of cell specialisation
  • Evening Primrose Oil which contains the Omega 6 fatty acid Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA) and Vitamin E ⁴

Find out more about how Optrex ProVision and Optrex ProVision Plus liquid capsules can help maintain your eye health or to place an order.


*DHA, Zinc, Vitamin A and B2 contribute towards maintenance of normal vision. The beneficial effect of DHA is obtained with a daily intake of 250mg. 

Food supplements should not be used as a substitute for a varied diet or a healthy lifestyle.




  1. https://www.sciencefocus.com/the-human-body/do-carrots-really-help-you-see-in-the-dark/ - sourced June 2019
  2. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321226.php - sourced June 2019
  3. https://www.healthline.com/health/eye-health/eye-health-supplements - sourced June 2019
  4. Optrex Provision Leaflet