Seeing

How Do You View Your World? Improve Your Vision Naturally

by Deep, Radi, and Mithu on March 23, 2010

in General Health

People see only what they are prepared to see. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

We don’t see things as they are ~ we see things as we are. (Anais Nin)

Introduction

 

This article emphasizes some of the underlying factors that may lead to deteriorating vision and suggests steps that we can take to alleviate or improve poor vision. Weak eyesight is not irrevocable. Like any other part of the body, the eyes are capable of healing themselves.

Seeing, like breathing, is something we do without much conscious thought.  But many of us don’t do it the right way. In the case of breathing, some people stop breathing abdominally and use the chest instead, which is the wrong method.

Likewise with eyesight. Some of us stop seeing effortlessly and start straining to see instead.  There are many factors which can interfere with our naturally relaxed way of seeing, leading to a downhill slide. Too much reading and close up work are amongst the most common causes of myopia, and school years can often initiate the myopic process.

Another important factor is stress and emotional turmoil, which can cause mental strain and consequently visual strain as the two are interrelated.

One of the pioneers who revolutionized our understanding of the causes of poor eyesight and how to correct it was Dr. William H. Bates (1860-1931). He challenged the premise that glasses were the only means of dealing with (as opposed to curing) bad vision. Bates attributed all vision problems to eye strain as a primary causal factor and suggested that methods of relaxing the eyes were fundamental to improving eyesight. He developed a series of techniques which incorporated visualization, exposing eyes to sunlight, ‘palming’ to relax the eyes, and certain eye, neck, and shoulder movements.

There are, however, different schools of thought about the efficacy of his methods, particularly his main physiological proposition that the eyeball changes shape to maintain focus. Optometry professor Elwin Marg postulated in 1952 that the Bates method owed its popularity to ‘flashes of clear vision’ experienced by many who followed it.

However, these techniques have undoubtedly worked for many people who have followed them and achieved remarkable results. A notable example is Harry Benjamin who describes how he combined the Bates method with a naturopathic approach to diet in his classic book “Better Sight Without Glasses.” As a result, he was able to reduce his extreme and rapidly progressing myopia (-20 sph. in his right eye and -20.5 sph. in his left eye) to such a degree that he was able to read, write, and function without glasses within a year.

In more recent times, Orlin Sorensen has developed his own system of vision training to strengthen and relax the eyes and focus their muscles. His own childhood dream to become a US Naval fighter pilot had been impeded by weak eyesight and eventually motivated him to do research on eye exercises. As a result, he worked his way back to 20/20 vision in a few weeks. And like Bates, he endorses the theory that glasses and contact lenses actually worsen vision in the long run because they act as a crutch for the eyes, further weakening the eye muscles.

Certain principles of maintaining good vision ring true for us though they may not necessarily do so for other people. We propose here to present a broad overview of some of the underlying causes of bad vision and corrective measures for these conditions, based on our own research and experiences. We don’t make any claims about the efficacy of any one method or school of thought as opposed to another. The objective of this article is to give people food for thought so that they can draw their own inferences and conclusions.

Attributes Of Vision and Corrective Measures We Can Take

 

FLUCTUATING VISION:

Many people report that there are times when their vision is better or worse than usual. Some see more clearly in the morning after a restful sleep with their eyesight gradually getting worse during the day, particularly at work. Others see better outdoors with natural sunlight than they do indoors with artificial lights.

Stress is certainly a contributory factor: many have reported that their vision deteriorates dramatically and becomes blurry under stressful conditions but that the blurriness dissipates once the cause of the stress is alleviated or taken away.

We would certainly agree that the above factors have an important bearing on our vision. Stress reduction improves our sight as does seeing in natural light or when we rest our eyes after working for lengthy periods at our computers. For eyes to relax, they need to be constantly moving and blinking and not staring. They are designed to be on the move all the time. Staring causes the muscles around the eyes to tense up and also reduces the rate of blinking significantly, leading to dry eyes and an increased risk of infection.

BREATHING:

The eyes and brain use more oxygen than any other part of the body and therefore a deficiency of oxygen significantly affects our ability to think and see clearly. Therefore, our breathing pattern affects our vision and a return to clear vision requires a return to natural breathing habits.

CENTRAL FIXATION:

Dr. Bates stressed the importance of ‘central fixation’ in his writings. In essence this is an awareness of seeing best in the centre of our field while at the same time remaining aware of our peripheral vision which by contrast is more blurry. The eyes are designed to see this way as opposed to trying to see the whole picture clearly at one time, which causes strain. When we are aware of greatest clarity in the centre and combine it with relaxed, easy movement of the eyes, then we are seeing at optimal capacity.

The Full Spectrum of Light and Sunlight:

Sunlight is perhaps the most important nutrient for our eyes. Research done by John Ott and Dr. Laurence Martel (President of the National Academy of Integrative Learning) amongst others has shown that the full spectrum of light is necessary for plants, animals, and humans to be healthy and it may influence our state of mind as studies of school children have suggested.

In one study done in a North Carolina school where full spectrum lighting was introduced, children were absent less throughout the year. In another study carried out in a Californian school, children in classrooms with more natural lighting demonstrated faster progression in both math and reading tests.

Natural sunlight taken in through our eyes and skin helps us stay healthy. We can get natural sunlight into our eyes by simply being outdoors without glasses or contacts, and there is no need to look directly into the sun at all. Sunning is done safely with closed eyelids.

Diet:

A healthy diet and lifestyle also play a vital role in maintaining good vision. The skin and eyes need to be well hydrated and nourished to function properly. Eating fresh and organic food helps as does cutting processed foods down to a minimum.

Foodstuffs and beverages that are not conducive to good health, and therefore by inference to good vision, include caffeine (coffee, soft drinks, regular tea); sugar in whatever form as it is an artificial sweetener (fruits provide natural sugars); alcohol which destroys many vital nutrients; artificial colors, flavorings and preservatives; white and refined flour; MSG; table salt; hydrogenated oils; and fried foods.

Dr.  Edward Kondrot, author of ‘Healing the Eye the Natural Way’ summed it up nicely when he said that food is not only the best medicine, it is the only medicine.

Reduced levels of antioxidants in the eyes are believed to have a detrimental effect on eyesight. Research has shown that the antioxidants found in leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale, and collard greens can help prevent cataracts by protecting the eyes from the damaging effects of ultraviolet sunlight. The body makes some of its own antioxidants including glutathione, super oxide dismutase, and coenzyme Q10. However, nutrients such as selenium, riboflavin, zinc and cysteine are needed to help the body produce these antioxidants.

Other trace nutrients and minerals that are known to contribute to healthy eye functioning are given in the list below:

  • Amino Acids (N-acetyl-cysteine and Taurine),
  • Alpha Lipoic Acid
  • Beta Carotene
  • Bioflavonoids
  • Calcium
  • Choline
  • Chromium
  • Copper
  • Enzymes
  • Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs), especially Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Glucosamine Sulfate
  • Inositol
  • Iodine
  • Lutein
  • Lycopene
  • Magnesium
  • Manganese
  • Molybdenum
  • Para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA)
  • Phosphorus
  • Potassium
  • Taurine
  • Vanadium and
  • Zeaxanthin,

Vitamins that are good for the eyes include A, B-1, B-2, B-3, B-5, B-6, B-7, B-9, B-12, C, D, E, and K.

Psychological Reasons for Bad Eyesight:

Dr. W.B. MacCracken, author of ‘Use Your Own Eyes’, points out that in a large number of cases, the reasons for bad vision have more to do with psychology than anything else. He cites numerous examples of people developing bad eyesight or other conditions due to stress or a sudden trauma or shock and suggests that such conditions may arise in an instant and may also change or disappear spontaneously.

Describing his own experience, he states that he had good vision till he was twenty years old and then suddenly developed a long record of peculiar and variable astigmatism. He attributes this to a trauma suffered during a swimming race when he had to be rescued after his strength gave out. After the race he found himself blind for about an hour and thereafter his vision returned but was no longer clear. He was diagnosed with astigmatism and his eyesight was quite variable. It became necessary for him to wear glasses constantly for the next thirty-seven years before he restored his vision using the Bates techniques.

Another prominent advocate of a direct correlation between disease or ill health and the mind is Louise Hayes. She compiled a reference guide detailing the mental causes of physical illness and affirmations for creating health, which was the basis of her best-selling book ‘Heal Your Body’.  This landmark book introduced her concepts to people worldwide and was translated into 25 languages. Another of her seminal works, ‘You Can Heal Your Life’, was published in 1984. It remained on the New York Times bestseller list for 13 consecutive weeks and more than 35 million copies of the book have been sold.

Some of the eye conditions she listed with their root underlying causes and affirmations for healing these conditions include the following:

Astigmatism: Fear of “seeing” the self
Astigmatism Correction Affirmation: I am now willing to see my own beauty and magnificence.

Cataracts: Inability to see ahead with joy
Cataract Correction Affirmation: Life is eternal and filled with joy

Children’s Eye Problems: Not wanting to see what’s going on in the family
Affirmation: Harmony and joy and beauty and safety now surround the child.

Farsight: Fear of the present
Farsight Correction Affirmation: I am safe in the here and now. I see that clearly

Nearsight/Myopia: Fear of the future.
Myopia Correction Affirmation: I accept life and am always safe

Conclusion:

There are, of course, many eye conditions that have not been touched upon in this article and the root causes may be entirely different to those that have been covered here. For example, vision can be affected by a medical condition like diabetes and eye exercises may not be effective in alleviating the problem in this case.

What we have done is touch upon some of the most common causes of defective vision and emphasized the psychological factors that have a systemic effect on our vision. We introduced Bates, a pioneer in evolving a school of thought on some of the major causes of bad vision and how they could be corrected.

We also touched upon, and advocated the Sorensen rebuild your vision program. This is a holistic approach for correcting defective eyesight using a combination of scientifically tested optical exercises while also addressing the underlying causes of vision problems.

We have identified a number of excellent products and methods for correcting and improving vision. While some are nutrients, or combinations of nutrients that are especially important for vision, others use different healing modalities, such as Soresen’s vision rebuilding program and home-based acupressure for strengthening vision. To learn more about these products  and methods, please visit out page on vision improvement products at the link below:

VISION STRENGTHENING PROGRAM AND EFFECTIVE NUTRIENTS AND METHODS FOR IMPROVING EYESIGHT

 

KEY REFERENCE SOURCES:

  • Visions Of Joy – http://www.visionsofjoy.org/
  • Use Your Own Eyes – W.B. MacCracken, M.D.
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bates_method
  • http://products.mercola.com/light-bulbs/
  • http://www.naturaleyecare.com/prev-anti.asp
  • http://www.louisehay.com
  • http://www.squidoo.com/spiritualmeaning

 

Disclaimer: The information contained in this website is only intended to educate and inform our readers. It is in no way intended to provide medical advice or to diagnose or treat any disease. If you have a health problem, you should consult a healthcare practitioner before taking any substances for medicinal purposes.

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