Aging And Your Vision

Dark Adaptation
Our ability to see in a large range of lighting conditions is remarkable. We use cones for bright light and colour, in low light conditions the rods take over. This two-part system covers a very wide range of brightness. Dark Adaptation is the term for how our vision adjusts when going from bright light to low light, like going from outdoors on a sunny day into a dark tunnel. Some may see it this way but to others it may seem like this [showing different shades of darkness/brightness].

This test starts with a bright flash of light at time zero (0), then measures how long it takes to recover vision. Cones are the first cells to recover, taking 5 minutes or so to reach full sensitivity, levelling out at medium light level. Rods are slower to adapt, reaching their maximum sensitivity at 20-30 minutes but at a much lower light level. This is the typical curve for a young person.

This graph also shows measurement of dark adaptation by people from different by decade. The red line shows adaptation rate in the 20s. Note that it takes the shortest time and becomes the most sensitive. The yellow line shows adaptation rate in the 70s. Note that it is slower and doesn’t reach the same level of sensitivity for either rods or cones. So what looks like this in youth, later gets to look something like this.
Since we are discussing dark adaptation, this is a good place to discuss the effect of glare and recovery from glare. In the past eye surgery could increase glare. Now it doesn’t and read more here lasik eye surgery facebook page. There are two categories of glare: one is annoyance glare, in which you are bothered by the bright light but it doesn’t necessarily decrease vision. The other is where the bright light hits a cloudy lens, a cataract, and defuses within the eye causing reduced vision.
Now, let us combine the effect of reduced contrast sensitivity we saw earlier and add the effect of glare. This graph shows how much acuity, using low contrast letters, is decreased with exposure to glare. This curve doesn’t seem that different until you realize where the 20/20 and 20/40 lines are, compared to 20/200, which represents legal blindness. Not only does glare make vision more difficult but aging also restores slows recovery time from glare exposure. This is also a significant factor in driving performance.
Field of Vision
Last, we come to field of vision, that is, how far off to the side you can see. One way of measuring visual field is by testing light sensitivity at multiple points. This is the way we typically test visual field, like in glaucoma. Measured this way, we can see that there is a decrease in sensitivity over all points in the visual field with age.
Another way to measure visual field is by the furthest extent of side vision. With either technique we can map missing areas of vision in relation to things like glaucoma and stroke. Imagine the challenge of driving with half your vision missing. Another approach is to look at it functionally, by measuring what is called useful field of view. This is a multi-part test that basically measures how well you can detect and react to objects in side vision. Compared with other measures of vision like chart-measured acuity, this has a higher correlation with automobile accident rate. We will have more to say about that in a later article on driving performance.
We have seen that over time, in an otherwise healthy eye vision changes in every dimension we discussed: acuity, reading ability, contrast sensitivity, color sensation, dark adaptation, glare and glare recovery and useful field of view. We did not discuss what underlies the changes. It turns out contributions come from each and every part of the visual system. In one video we briefly discuss LASIK surgery on youtube. In future articles we will discuss structural changes in detail, for example,  clouding of the lens (known as cataract), decreased sensitivity to the retina and decrease in ability to process information in the brain.

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Aging Gracefully Avoiding Knee Surgery



Since no one I know is getting any younger… Let’s look into how you and I can age a little more gracefully. Most of the time, people don’t think about aging and how to do it well. That is, until it’s right at the doorstep and there’s no energy or desire to take care of your health.

It doesn’t have to be that way, you know? Since no one get’s younger, it really is imperative that people think about aging well when they are young and have plenty of energy and a willingness to do what it takes to stay healthy.

Exercise For Your Future

Even right now, there is a crazy fitness boom going on. CrossFit and functional training is mainstream. Extreme athletes put their bodies through the rigors of extreme athletics and things like Iron Man triathalons. But, probably the majority of all those participating in these activities are not thinking about what they will be doing when they’re 80. For the most part, people live for the present and compete in the present.

Even if this is the case, don’t get me wrong. There’s a lot of benefit to “killing” yourself for 26.2 miles, or tossing 100lbs barbells between friends. Most people who are fit when they’re young are generally in better health when they’re old.

Unfortunately, the problem is that a lot of these activities are incredibly high impact. That translates into a lot of wear and tear on the joints. Knee joints are especially vulnerable due to the fact that they bear much of the impact when running. And, also, if the mechanics aren’t the best during running or contact sports, there can be a lot of trauma to the cartilage, the knee ligaments, as well as the muscles in general.

Avoid Knee Surgery

Arthritis of the knee is a major problem for former athletes and active folks. It’s kind of almost imperceptible as it creeps up on you. When you’re young and you want like nothing else to compete, you can tell yourself anything about how you feel. Knee pain? Oh, just put some ice on it., Just get a steroid injection. You know all the things you tell yourself.

The problem is that one day, your joints may just rebel and stop letting you hammer away on them. You may end up, like so many others, getting a knee replacement. If you let it get to this point, your days of pounding the pavement or deep squats are essentially over.

Sure, there are knee replacement exercises, but, they are just to keep the knee joint moving and stretched out. After knee surgery like this, you’ll really have to take it easy because life will have changed and you’ll really want to make sure you don’t have to have another surgery.

But, if you start thinking right now about aging gracefully. You may be able to avoid things like arthritic joints, knee or hip replacements, and chronic pain. It starts by watching what you eat, getting enough sleep, listening to your body, and getting a healthy dose of low impact aerobic activity like walking and hiking.

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Treat Your Chronic Pain With Nutrition

nutrition-chronic-painSomething that people frequently overlook when trying to manage chronic pain is what they eat and their nutrition. But, in a real sense, an easy remedy for at least some of your chronic pain is in the foods you’re eating. One chiropractor in Sacramento calls it Nutritional Counseling.

How You Eat Affects Your Pain

Yep, and not just what you eat but how much you eat. It’s about taming that appetite. While it’s important that everyone eat a healthy, balanced diet. It’s even more important if you are battling with chronic pain. And that can be from any condition. From a failed surgery, a bad back, fibromyalgia, or anything else that can cause pain to last and last.

Making sure your diet is well-balanced diet has so many different benefits to your overall health, it’s hard to list them all. But, we’re talking about pain right now.

First and foremost, if you’re overweight or obese, this will magnify the pain that you have for obvious reasons. It’s hard for the body to carry a lot of extra weight if it’s not in tip top shape. So controlling how much you eat in an effort to lose weight can go a long way to helping arthritic knees, hips, and ankles (not to mention that bad back) a lot better.

But, losing weight can also take a load off your heart too. If your ticker is ticking efficiently, then your blood will be circulating. And, if you have good circulation, you’ll have less pain overall.

Nutrition: It’s Not Just About Losing Weight

But, losing weight is just one thing that involves the food you eat. Nutrition is another aspect of managing chronic pain. Surely you know that chiropractors are known for treating people with low back pain. Did you know a big portion of DCs also consult in nutrition to help with pain relief and improving overall function? True story.

You’ll see supplements in many chiropractic offices. There are antioxidants, minerals, and herbs of all sorts. These are generally taken to help bolster your diet. They’re important because a lot of pain is caused by inflammation in the system.

Antioxidants and other supplements can help with inflammation. But, diet can also help reduce inflamed tissues also. Fruits like cranberries, cherries and oranges, peaches, and kiwi can help. Then different vegetables such as asparagus, cauliflower are also known to help people with pain conditions.

Chiropractors frequently consult patients and encourage chronic pain sufferers avoid things like dairy products, eggs, and meat because they are associated with chronic inflammatory conditions. But also things like wheat, or, corn have been reported to worsen inflammation. For some people even chocolate has to be avoided. Bummer.

Bottom line: You may have more control over your chronic pain than you think. It may be all in what you eat.

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You Are What You Eat

sandwich photo
Photo by rainydayknitter

Our bodies are made and maintained by whatever we eat or consume. So, in order for all the tissues and parts of the body to be in the best shape and of the best quality, you got to make sure you’re getting the best kind of food.

Not only should the food be the best it can be. It has to be cooked or prepared in a good way to. Not over or undercooking. Not old and stale. And, it helps if the combinations of food are compatible too.

Be religious about it. Make sure you get the best out of each meal. And, even if you have to make simple meals like sandwiches, just make sure there is a lot of variety. Don’t get stuck in a rut just eating peanut butter and jelly.

Here’s a good sandwich recipe:

lets start step by step veg cheese toast sandwich recipe:
1. first prep everything before you start preparing the sandwiches. prepare the chutney. here i made coriander-mint chutney. also slice the veggies and grate the cheese. the cheese added is cheddar cheese.
2. slice the edges of the bread if you prefer. spread butter evenly on all the slices. make sure the butter covers the entire of bread. a generous coating of butter does not allow the bread to become soggy, when you apply the chutney.
3. spread the mint-coriander chutney on all the bread slices.
4. place the onion, tomato, potato and capsicum slices. sprinkle some chaat masala or sandwich masala on them. also sprinkle a pinch of black salt evenly.
5. now top with grated cheese.
6. cover the sandwiches with the remaining bread slices and place in a preheated toaster or grill.
7. toast for 2 to 3 minutes till the bread gets toasted well and golden. toast the remaining veg cheese sandwiches in the same way.
8. spread some butter on top of the hot sandwiches and serve cheese toast sandwich hot with the remaining chutney and tomato sauce.

Give that a try and see what you think.

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Paleo Diet In A Nutshell

Seattle Times

At its core, the Paleo diet is devoid of all processed foods, refined sugars and dairy. In theory, it is supposed to mirror the way Stone Age hunter-gatherers ate. The diet has been around for a while but has gained popularity over the last several years. And it doesn’t seem to be headed for extinction anytime soon.

Nate Furlong, of New Hudson, Mich., has been following a Paleo diet for three years. Furlong, 29, a clinical-exercise physiologist, discovered the Paleo way of eating while working in a cardiologist office. (He’s also a personal trainer and Paleo nutrition expert.)

“I was … helping clients with some nutrition recommendations according to normal USDA standards: low fat, kind of low protein and higher in carbohydrates,” Furlong said. “I saw them lose some weight, but not get off meds, so I started searching other options and Paleo was talked about favorably.”

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Ever Been To An Herb And Garden Faire?

Heirloom Seed Project Credits: A Weekend at the Herb and Garden Faire

You may not be able to find your way to the Herb and Garden Faire in Lancaster PA. But don't let that discourage your from looking for one closer to you.

You can learn so much from the gardners and even the other visitors that it will be well worth the effort.

After a day of watching, smelling, and tasting all things herbal… and seeing how simple setting up a an herb garden can be for yourself, you will have plenty of ideas to spice up any meal.


What started out as a small plant has grown over the years into what may be the largest event of this type in the northeast. There’s always an impressive lineup of nurseries, herb growers, and plant lovers offering an array of rare, heirloom, and unusual, plants for sale. From vegetables to fruits, and herbs to flowers, if there is a plant that you’re looking for chances are good that you can pick it up at the Herb & Garden Faire. Credits: A Weekend at the Herb and Garden Faire

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Some Healthy Recipe Ideas

We all could use a little inspiration when it comes to having nutritious meals. I thought that I would share this with you just to give you a few more good ideas.


Check for 10 tips here.

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