Written on October 14, 2013 at 9:50 am , by Lauren Cardarelli
Gauging the speed, distance and spin of an opponent’s 60+ mph serve is crucial in the game of volleyball — especially when you’re three-time Olympic gold medalist Misty May-Treanor. That’s why she never messed around with her astigmatism and far sightedness. “Growing up, I always got an annual eye exam,” she told us as she kicked off VSP Vision Care’s five day-long free screenings in Atlanta, GA last week in honor of yesterday’s World Sight Day. “It’s important for people to maintain their eye health. Many people don’t have vision insurance for their eye care needs.” And by many people, around 210,000 Atlanta residents are currently without coverage.
Giving back by hosting the largest free eye care event in the U.S. during the controversy surrounding Obamacare and the current government is just one of the projects Misty has up her sleeve now that she’s retired from international competition. “This is one way that I can lend my voice to help others in the community,” she says. “I’m also coaching and trying to start a family.” So what about playing the game? Of course she can’t keep herself off the court! “I still play for fun,” she says, spilling that her fit routine is focused more now on low-impact exercises with lighter weight training than she endured pre-Olympics. And don’t think that just because she’s not sporting those skimpy (but awesome) uni’s she has given up on staying strong with that killer muscle tone. Her current goal? “To burn as many calories as I can so that I can eat whatever I want at Thanksgiving,” she jokes.
With Sochi right around the corner, Misty looks forward to cheering on the good ol’ U.S. of A. “A lot of the winter sports are foreign to me,” she admits. “I didn’t grow up a skier or ever go to a luge competition, but they’re just as exciting to watch.” Her favorite to watch? Figure skating, although bobsled and hockey are close seconds. Don’t expect this decorated Olympian (she keeps her medals safe in their boxes in a “secret place”) to get sentimental, though. “I’ve gone through four Olympics and it’s nice to take a break from competition and be able to focus on other aspects of my life, which I think makes you a more well-rounded person,” Misty says.
For more information on the importance of annual eye exams, check out VSP Vision Care’s website. Be sure to talk to your local optometrist about early detection for vision problems and other potential chronic diseases linked to eye health, too.
Written on May 29, 2012 at 11:27 am , by Karla Walsh
“Every time you open your mouth, you have an opportunity to improve your health or promote disease,” says Elizabeth Somer, R.D., author of Eat Your Way Sexy. While nutritious foods are good for your whole body (antioxidants help keep vessels clean no matter where they are) certain foods and nutrients are especially beneficial for different parts.
Since we’re wrapping up Healthy Vision Month, we asked Somer to give us a rundown of her top 10 eats for your eyes. Vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, beta carotene, lutein have been shown to reduce risk for cataracts and macular degeneration. Here are foods that are high in these nutrients, plus ideas for how to incorporate them in your diet.
- Spinach: Toss these lutein superstars into lasagna, layer leaves in sandwiches or even blend in a smoothie (you won’t taste it mixed with fruit!). Just 10 milligrams of lutein per day—about 1/2 cup spinach—can help prevent vision loss, research has proven.
- Broccoli: The green veggies, delicious in salads, soups or these twice-baked potatoes (yum!), pack a one-two punch of vitamin C and lutein.
- Citrus fruits: Slice up an orange or grapefruit as a side with your lunch salad or sandwich for some vitamin C.
- Nuts: High in both omega-3 fatty acids (which may help prevent dry eyes) and vitamin E, nuts like almonds and cashews are great picks. Snack on an ounce or mix a tablespoon into your morning oatmeal or yogurt.
- Seafood: Many fish are naturally rich in omega-3 fats. Try salmon or arctic char for the largest dose, and find some of our favorite seafood recipes here.
- Bell peppers: Serve in a stir-fry or dip in hummus more vitamin C in your diet. One red bell pepper provides 240 percent of your recommended daily amount of the vitamin!
- Avocado: Mash them up in guacamole or slice on top of a sandwich for some hunger-fighting healthy fats and peeper-promoting vitamin E.
- Carrots: Bugs Bunny was on to something…beta carotene was actually named after carrots since the veggies are such an ample source. Throw slices or coins into salads, pasta primavera or soups.
- Sweet Potatoes: Another super source of beta carotene, these tubers are tasty in mashes (swap for basic white potatoes) or baked in the oven as healthier fries.
- Whole grains: You’ve heard that going whole is better for more fiber, but foods like whole-wheat breads, pastas and cereals also pack zinc and selenium. Serve that bell pepper stir-fry over brown rice for a meal that’s a feast for the eyes.
More from FITNESS: These lesser-known, affordable superfoods can help keep you healthy and slim!