August 19, 2013
That title got your attention? May I suggest not even reading the rest of this because I couldn’t find any valid report that implicates gluten causing vision problems. But if you search google for “gluten vision” you’ll find plenty of stories where people will say their vision improved by reducing or eliminating gluten from their diet. If I weren’t an eye doctor I might not know what to believe because all the top results are about how gluten might have been the cause of their visual symptoms. And think about this. How many people go past the first page of google results to find the scientific evidence or even want to read it? Top google results are there because the webpage is popular.
I’ll write just a little about gluten and a little about vision nutrition now because if you got past the first paragraph I really didn’t want to end without something a little interesting to read. Regarding gluten, as you know it comes from grains like wheat. It’s the “glue” that makes the dough stick together I’ve read. It’s also found in some make-up like lipstick so don’t eat that! Celiac disease is caused by a part of gluten called gliadin and some people also have a sensitivity to the different proteins in gluten. And, in case you drink beer, hops do not contain gluten! Hops are flowers. But most beers contain some amount of gluten.
Let me say a couple of things about nutrition for the eyes. The proper nutrition for normal healthy eyes is…..
a balanced diet.
And please vary your diet! Nothing more boring than the same ‘ol thing. Really, eat vegetables. Farmers don’t grow them because they’re bad for you.
Oh, you can buy and eat whatever you want or let some official looking website or product label convince you of the need for supplementing your diet. There are companies that sell supplements for vision! Really. If you have macular degeneration or dry eye then maybe you could benefit from some specific supplements. But come on! You’re probably normal and healthy. How did our ancestor’s bodies ever work 100 years ago, 1,000 years ago and longer without all these people trying to tell you take take some herb or some silly pill?
I have normal healthy patients tell me they are taking vitamins (and supplements) so I ask them if they were diagnosed with some deficiency. I’m talking about all those multivitamin and specific supplements including those targeting your eyes and vision. Please, don’t be silly and buy them unless you’ve been to a registered dietician. But it is hard to go against the market isn’t it or what your friends tell you or even what your mom recommends or used to do. Even some doctors get all worked up about vitamins and supplements. Taking vitamins and supplements is just the norm it seems. It’s like trying to ward off the evil spirits using garlic. I know, we all have fears but like most things, there’s nothing lurking there. It’s just you and fear.
Simple wheat diagram