Age-related macular degeneration and coronary artery disease in older adults have been found to be linked. In the study, published in the British Journal of Ophthalmology, the researchers reviewed medical records from over 1,600 people. They found that the more severe a person’s coronary artery disease was, the more likely they were to experience age-related macular degeneration.
Other vision problems related to heart problems included cataracts, retinopathy, transient ischemic attack, and branch retinal vein occlusion, to name a few.
Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the most common form of vision loss affecting nearly two million Americans – and growing.
Study author Bamini Gopinath said, “Age-related macular degeneration and coronary artery disease share similar risk factors, such as smoking, higher body mass index, hypertension, and genetic risk factors.”
Doctor of optometry David P. Sendrowski added, “When the blood vessels are predisposed to being blocked, they start this inflammatory process.” This process could contribute to AMD because the eyes rely on small blood vessels to work properly.
Lifestyle changes to prevent vision loss and heart disease
There are many overlapping lifestyle changes that can work to lower a person’s risk of heart disease and vision loss. Some of these include not smoking, eating a nutrient-dense diet, exercising regularly, controlling your alcohol intake, controlling blood pressure, diabetes, and cholesterol, and losing weight. Not only are these tactics good for your heart, but they are good for your eyes, too.
Diet-specific guidelines include eating whole grains, plenty of fruits and vegetables, consuming healthy fats, avoiding sodium, and staying well hydrated.
By following these simple lifestyle tips, you can have a stronger health and sharper vision.