Friday, October 22, 2021

Fighting glaucoma with cup of tea - ITREALMS

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Preamble:

It has been often said that people are what they eat. This includes the tea we take. Tea has been described by nutrition experts as an aromatic beverage prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured or fresh leaves of Camellia sinensis, an evergreen shrub native to China and East Asia which contain unique antioxidants called flavonoids and has since gone worldwide including having notoriety for an African tea versions such as Ethiopian tea or Kenyans.
According to Wikipedia, ITREALMS gathered that tea is the most widely consumed drink in the world after water, even as some experts at WebMed.com, equally defined tea as a name given to a lot of brews, but purists consider only green tea, black tea, white tea, oolong tea, and pu-erh tea as the real things.


What is glaucoma?

As said by medical experts at MayoClinic.org, glaucoma is the result of damage to the optic nerve. Stressing that as this nerve gradually deteriorates, blind spots develop in patient’s visual field and this has been proven to cause nerve damage which often relates to increased pressure in the eye.

They noted that its a group of eye conditions that could cause blindness. Generally, with all types of glaucoma, they said that the nerve connecting the eye to the brain is seen as ‘damaged,’ usually due to high eye pressure.

 But the most common type of glaucoma known as open-angle glaucoma; often has no symptoms other than slow vision loss. On the other hand, “Angle-closure glaucoma, although rare, is a medical emergency and its symptoms include eye pain with nausea and sudden visual disturbance,” whereas treatment includes eye drops, medication and surgery.

Can glaucoma patients drink tea?

Research has shown that dietary habits influence disease risk or otherwise. Though certain foods may trigger chronic health conditions, others offer strong medicinal and protective qualities. Hence, many people argue that food is medicine. Yet, diet alone cannot and should not replace medicine in all circumstances, according to HealthLine.com experts.

So, in response to the above question is in the affirmative, according to the ConsumerReports.org, asserting that such as Chamomile, rooibos, and green teas could be effective in treating and refreshing sore or red eyes. This, the report elucidated was based on the anti-inflammatory properties of these teas, which may help to reduce any swelling or inflammation that accompanies irritated eyes.

Also, ITREALMS gathered that in December 2017, the British Journal of Ophthalmology, researchers found a strong link between people drinking hot tea daily and lower odds of developing glaucoma; That disease of the eye's optic nerve which affects some 3 million Americans and is a leading cause of blindness in developing countries, bulk of which are in Africa.

The good news from recent study by the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), has found out that a daily cup of hot tea may reduce your risk by up to 74 percent of developing glaucoma, one of the leading causes of blindness worldwide.

What to avoid and take?

While consuming a high trans-fatty acid diet could result in damaging the optic nerve. Thus experts at IrisVision advised on avoiding foods like baked goods such as cookies, cakes, donuts or fried items like French fries or stick margarine to steer clear from worsening your glaucoma, so as to also improve your eye health.

In addition, ITREALMS gathered that studies showed that eating foods rich in retinol (Vitamin A), beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin may help reduce the risk or help prevent glaucoma and maintain healthy eyesight for people at higher risk.

James Sell of IrisVision, posited that you need carbohydrates to function properly, so what you can do is consume complex carbohydrates such as beans and vegetables even as patients could supplement these for simple carbohydrates found in foods like “Potatoes, Rice, Bread” to name but a few.

In 2016, Nigeria National Blindness and Visual Impairment Survey available to 
ITREALMS points to the fact that glaucoma-specific blindness prevalence in Nigeria was at 0.7 percentage, 95 % CI 0.6–0.9 %) among those aged ≥40 years is one of the highest ever reported. This study determined the risk factors for open-angle glaucoma (OAG) in adults with visual impairment as eventual diseases caused.

The survey also indicated that 1.1 to 1.4 million adults in Nigeria have glaucoma, most of whom are not aware that they have the disease. Even as one in every 20 Nigerians aged 40 years and above has glaucoma, and one in five being blind.

Submission:

Experts at MayoClinic insist that there are a few remedies including taking several vitamins and nutrients known to be important to eye health, such as zinc, copper, selenium, and antioxidant vitamins C, E, and A.

Though regular exercise may reduce eye pressure in open-angle glaucoma, experts postulate drastically limiting intake of caffeine but moderate use of drinks and talking to your doctor about an appropriate exercise programme cannot be overemphasized.

Then maintenance of fluid at any given time during the course of a day, plus sleeping with your head elevated could be helpful. Mostly by using a wedge pillow that keeps your head slightly raised, about 20 degrees, has been shown to reduce intraocular pressure while you sleep.

Above all, being, conscious of what you eat or drink matters including that cup of tea, mostly by avoiding caffeinated drinks, as well as taking prescribed medicine, whereas using required eyedrops or other medications as prescribed could help patient get the best possible result including a cup of warm tea.

*Remmy Nweke/DoP

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