• Weight & your eye health

    23rd September 2020
  • Watch your weight to help protect your vision and eye health. Obesity is a risk factor for all four major causes of sight loss in the UK – macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma and cataracts.

    People with a BMI of 25 and above are 1.5 times more likely to suffer macular degeneration – the UK’s leading cause of sight loss – and obesity appears to increase the rate of progression of the condition even further. For those with a BMI over 30 their risk of macular degeneration is double that of a person who is not overweight.

    People who are genetically predisposed to macular degeneration (those with a family history of the condition) must be particularly careful about their weight as their risk of the condition can rise by almost 300 per cent if they are obese.

    Early obesity is also associated with diabetes, which is linked to diabetic retinopathy – a disease of the retina that can ultimately lead to total sight loss. Ninety per cent of people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK have type 2 diabetes.

    Research shows that 60 per cent of people with type 2 diabetes will develop some form of diabetic retinopathy.

    Also, people who are overweight are twice as likely to develop cataracts.

    Damage to blood vessels in the eye caused by excess body weight has also been linked to the onset of glaucoma. Protect your peepers by keeping your waist to no bigger than 37 inches if you’re a man and 31.5inches if you’re a woman.

    From: www.visionmatters.org.uk