Five tips to take care of your vision after 50

Keeping your eyes healthy as you get older.

How to take care of your vision after 50?

It’s common for eyesight to deteriorate as you age, leading to vision problems like age-related macular degeneration (AMD), but adopting certain lifestyle habits can help maintain your eye health.

These habits can reduce your risk for conditions associated with
age-related vision loss such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataracts and diabetic retinopathy, among others.

Senior couple practicing yoga in a park to enhance eye health and prevent vision diseases like macular degeneration.
Elderly woman adjusting glasses to read smartphone, highlighting challenges with age-related vision problems.

General causes of age-related vision loss

For your eyes to work well, it’s important that your eye cells are healthy so they can complete their normal functions and prevent eye degeneration diseases like macular degeneration. As you get older, your eye cells can start to deteriorate, which leads to vision impairments. Understanding the cause of macular degeneration and implementing preventive measures is key to managing this vision disease.
Although the specific causes of each condition vary, there are a few broad issues that are related to vision loss:

  • Difficulty removing harmful chemicals from the eye: Within each eye, there are lots of tiny chemical reactions happening to fuel your cells. However, these reactions also produce waste products which can damage your eyes if they aren’t being removed fast enough and start to build up.
  • Damage to cells in your eye: Harmful waste products and UV light can lead to eye degeneration, damaging the cells in your eyes, which impairs their regular functioning. Damage to parts of the eye such as the retina, lens or optic nerve can cause problems in focusing light on your eye or sending information to the brain, which is related to blurry vision and vision loss.
  • Genetics: Genetics play a role in the development of various age-related vision impairments including but not limited to AMD, cataracts and glaucoma. If you know you have a family history of eye disease, you should get your eyes checked by an eye care professional regularly.

5 Lifestyle changes to improve your eye health

Although you can’t change your genetics, there are a few lifestyle habits you can adopt to keep your eyes healthy: 

Eat well:

Eating a healthy diet rich in antioxidants is crucial for preventing eye problems with age, providing your eyes the nutrients they need for normal functioning and toxin removal. Specifically, antioxidants which are found in foods like fruits, leafy vegetables, fish and nuts can all help remove waste buildup in your eyes and throughout your body.

A good diet reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity, which are all associated with vision impairments. Diabetes can lead to diabetic retinopathy: when high blood sugar levels damage blood vessels around the retina which can cause blurry vision or block blood circulation around the eyes1.

Exercise regularly:

Exercising for at least 20 minutes a day can benefit your eye health. Exercising improves the circulation in blood vessels around your eyes which helps your body remove any toxins that have accumulated. Intense exercise isn’t needed to experience these benefits—a brisk walk should suffice2.

In addition, exercising helps you maintain a healthy weight, which reduces your risk for developing a number of conditions associated with eye disease like cardiovascular disease, obesity and diabetes.

Quit smoking:

Smokers are four times more likely than non-smokers to develop age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and have an increased risk of developing various other eye diseases3. Smoking increases the amount of waste products in your body while killing off antioxidants meant to protect you from toxins that cause cellular damage.

Smoking is also associated with high blood pressure, which can damage blood vessels around the eyes, cause fluid buildup under the retina and/or damage the optic nerve4. These issues can later manifest as decreased visual acuity, macular disease and/or adult blindness.

Wear sunglasses that protect from ultra-violet (UV) light:

UV light has been found to damage eye cells in the lens and retina. The lens is responsible for focusing light on your retina and increased exposure to UV light can damage cells in the lens and lead to the development of cataracts5. UV light can damage cells in your retina which may contribute to the development of AMD3.

When looking for a good pair of sunglasses, choose ones that wrap around your head and protect from both UV-A and UV-B rays.

Get regular eye exams:

It’s important to see your eye care professional regularly since they’re often able to detect eye diseases before you start to experience symptoms. Early detection can help to slow the progression of various eye problems and vision loss.

Signs of macular degeneration:

Doctors can detect early stages of AMD with a few simple tests before it progresses. In its early stages, people with AMD can be asymptomatic or have slightly blurry vision. However, advanced stages of AMD involve worsened visual acuity, dulling of colours and large dark spots in central vision which can significantly affect quality of life.

Senior woman practicing yoga, enhancing flexibility in a yoga class, showing the importance of regular physical activity for eye health.
Senior man squinting to read text on smartphone, illustrating common vision challenges like macular degeneration.

When Dry AMD is diagnosed:

Ophthalmologists can recommend treatments like MacuMira to help reduce the symptoms of dry AMD and halt its progression. This non-invasive therapy utilizes a patented microcurrent technology to stimulate the retinal cells, enhancing their ability to clear waste and improve function without surgery or injections.
Don’t wait until your symptoms progress. Early intervention with MacuMira can help halt the progression of Dry AMD and improve your quality of life. Visit our Treatment for AMD page to learn more about how this treatment can rejuvenate your vision. Schedule an appointment with your eye care specialist today and ask about MacuMira, or contact us directly to find a certified provider near you.

Disclaimer: Always speak to your primary health care provider and/or eye care provider before making any changes to your lifestyle, activities or diet.