Eye Strain

Eye Strain

Eye strain occurs when the eyes are over-used, resulting in painful, tired eyes.


  • Sore, tired, watery, twitchy or dry eyes
  • Eyes may be exceptionally sensitive to light
  • Headache and blurred vision may also occur


  • Overuse of the eyes (e.g. prolonged periods of looking at a computer or reading)
  • Exposure to glare or poor lighting
  • Inadequate consumption of vitamin A or betacarotene
  • Magnesium deficiency may be associated with twitching eyelids

Nutritional & Herbal Support

  • Bilberry is a rich source of antioxidant compounds called anthocyanosides, which support the health of the capillaries, and in particular those of the eyes. Population studies suggest that regular consumption of foods containing anthocyanosides improves visual function. In particular, the anthocyanosides enhance the functioning of the retina and therefore may help the eyes to adapt to variations in light intensity and improve vision in poor light
  • Vitamin A supports healthy eye function and vision. It is essential for the normal functioning of the retina, in particular visual adaptation to darkness, and consequently supports night vision. Cod and halibut liver oils are naturally rich sources of vitamin A. Betacarotene is converted into vitamin A by the body, so is also a beneficial source, with additional antioxidant properties

Diet & Lifestyle advice

  • Make sure your work place is well-lit, and take regular breaks when reading, working at the computer or performing detailed work such as sewing
  • Antioxidants such as vitamins C and E, the carotenoids betacarotene, lutein and zeaxanthin, and flavonoids such as anthocyanosides help to protect the blood vessels of the eyes from Free Radical Damage, decreasing your risk of age-related Macular Degeneration. To ensure your diet includes these important nutrients, eat plenty of fresh leafy vegetables (such as spinach), orange-coloured fruit and vegetables (such as carrots) and berries (such as blueberries)
  • Omega-3 fats are also important for the blood vessels of the eyes, and eating two or more serves of fish per week may help reduce your risk of developing age-related Macular DegenerationDon't smoke - it promotes Free Radical Damage, harms the blood vessels of the eyes, and increases your risk of developing vision problems
  • Protect your eyes from glare by wearing UV-rated sunglasses when outdoors

If symptoms persist consult your healthcare professional. Information provided is of a general nature and should not replace that of your healthcare professional.

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