Carrots are one thing, but fish are another! It wasn’t just an old wife’s tale that your mom was quoting when she made you eat your carrots to improve your vision. She wasn’t lying when she said that carrots would help your eyes to adjust well to seeing at night. No, in fact, there is truth and scientific evidence behind your childhood vegetable requirements at the dinner table. Carrots actually contain something called beta-carotene, which our bodies transform into Vitamin A – which is important for healthy vision.

According to experts, “Vitamin A, also called retinol, is key in fighting vision problems like cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration and night blindness. It is found primarily in fish oils, liver, eggs and fortified dairy products. However, if you don’t eat animal products, you can make sure you are getting plenty of vitamin A by eating fruits and vegetables that contain carotenoids like beta-carotene, which the body then converts to useful vitamin A.” Okay, great! So, Mom really was right. I actually do have to finish my carrots!

But there’s more. Fish oil is another vision solution. Fish oils have been shown to not only improve our Vitamin A levels – with end results of improved vision – but last week, scientific study reports showed that eating fish has been shown to fight off eye diseases such as macular degeneration as well. Now that’s worth setting our sights on. The Harvard Women’s Health Study followed over 39,000 women by collecting thorough food-frequency surveys from them starting in 1993. After the average of 10 years of follow up, the surveyed women reported 235 women had developed eye disease resulting in irreversible loss of vision.

However, “the analysis, in Archives of Ophthalmology, found that women who had reported eating one or more servings of fish per week were 42 percent less likely to develop age-related macular degeneration than those who ate less than a serving each month… Eating canned tuna and dark-meat fish like mackerel, salmon, sardines, bluefish and swordfish appeared to have the most benefit.” The research was, of course, adjusted to control for external disease-causing variables including smoking.

So, the evidence is very clear. Good vision improves your outlook both physically and mentally. Not only will you be able to see better and prevent eye diseases over the long term by eating carrots and fish products, but you’ll also begin to realize that eating for your health is a total mindset shift for some consumers out there. Rather than consuming loads of pill supplements to get the fish-oil and Vitamin A that your body needs, you can go straight to the source – healthy foods. You can get the nutrients you need from food without supplements. This study shows that. I encourage you to make that a mindset shift and lifestyle change if you’re not already practicing it already, because food is more effective than vitamins and supplements in incorporating needed nutrients into your body.