Women, We Have One More Thing for Your Wellness Plate
A woman's health and wellness are integral to her quality of life. Being well means being able to show up for those she loves. To stay well, a woman must understand what could make her unwell. Most women are aware of some of these things. They may know that stress can degrade their ability to be fully engaged, and they may even realize that stress can take a toll on physical health. What many women miss, according to research, is there are risks for eye disease that uniquely affect them.
According to one poll
- 90% of women in American never think about their risk of eye disease.
- About 85% of women believe that men and women are equally at risk for eye diseases.
- Considering eye disease risks, 5% of women think men have a higher risk.
Women need to know more about their eye health, the potential for eye disease, and how they can manage risks. Studies indicate that, in the 40 and older age group, more women will develop conditions like glaucoma, cataracts, and age-related macular degeneration than men.
While the most important matter is understanding that risks exist, women often want to know why. Science suggests a few factors that contribute to a woman's risk for eye disease. These include:
- Hormones. From puberty onward, a woman's hormones will fluctuate every single month. When she becomes pregnant, they will fluctuate more severely for a period of about 18 months. When she goes through "the change," they will once again fluctuate more wildly. These changes are thought to affect eye health in ways such as the flexibility of the eyes' lenses and the quality of tears.
- Lifestyle. Middle-aged women are especially vulnerable to weight gain (thanks to hormones). Excess weight can cause insulin resistance and diabetes. Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the blood vessels in the eyes, sometimes severely.
- Lifespan. In general, women are expected to live longer than men. The additional years of a woman's life naturally carry risks for a variety of conditions.
Staying Clear about Eye Health
Good lifestyle choices are said to offset the risks of eye disease that cannot be avoided. Suggestions include:
- Do not smoke.
- Limit alcohol consumption.
- Eat leafy greens and fresh foods that contain antioxidants and fatty acids.
- Clean makeup brushes regularly and dispose of old eye makeup every so often.
- See the eye doctor for a full, dilated eye exam every year.
The Eye Institute of Houston offers comprehensive eye services to patients in the Bellaire, TX area. To schedule a visit, call (713) 668-7337.