Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
My mother has glaucoma. Does that mean I will have it too? Is there anything I can do to avoid glaucoma?
A: Glaucoma is not hereditary disease although high blood pressure does run in the family and it can predispose one to glaucoma. Glaucoma is a condition due to increased pressure inside your eyeballs potentially causing long-term damage to the retina and the optic nerve.
To help prevent glaucoma and maintain healthy function of your eyes, you should:
1. Have regular eye exams.
2. Keep your blood pressure in check.
3. Eat foods beneficial for your eyes such as carrots, spinach, and blueberries.
4. Take supplements such as fish oil or flax seed oil, lutein, antioxidants like anthocyanosides-rich bilberry, and lycopene.
5. Rest your eyes often and do eye exercises daily.
Additionally, I recommend that you also try the Traditions of Tao herbal formulas “Eyes”, “Super Clarity” and the “Creative Balance” tea to help nourish dry and blurry eyes and promote blood flow. Of course, discuss with your physician before beginning any new health regime.