The Functional Medicine Radio Show Podcast 0
Dry Eye Causes and Treatments: The Functional Medicine Radio Show
In this episode of The Functional Medicine Radio Show, Dr. Carri’s special guest Dr. Travis Zigler explains natural treatments for dry eyes.
Dry Eye Causes and Treatment @EyeLoveTheSun on @DrCarriD #Podcast! Check it out: http://www.drcarri.com/dry-eyes-causes-and-treatment/
iTunes Link: https://itunes.apple.com/podcast/functionalmedicineradio
Dr. Zigler’s website - Eye Love Cares Foundation
Book – Reclaim Your Energy and Feel Normal Again - Dr. Carri Drzyzga
Main Questions Asked:
What is dry eye disease?
What are the most common causes of dry eye?
What diet changes can help our eye health?
How quickly can people expect to see changes in their eye health after transforming to a plant based diet?
Does blue light hurt our eyes?
Do we get blue light from television screens?
Can people wear blue light blockers on top of prescription glasses?
Do prescription glasses made with blue light blocker coating impact melatonin production throughout the day?
What do you think of the f.lux program that people can use on their tablets, computers and phones?
Is there an underlying hormonal cause for dry eyes?
Can essential fatty acids be used to moisturize dry eyes?
Key Points made by Dr. Zigler:
- Dry eye is considered a syndrome clinically, however, it is a symptom of an underlying inflammation of the body.
- Focus on reducing the underlying causes of inflammation in the three parts of the eye – cornea, conjunctiva, and eyelids.
- Pharmaceutical treatments for dry eye only reduce inflammation of the eye without getting to the root cause of the underlying disease.
- It is important to switch to organic, non-GMO fruits and vegetables and focus on green leafy vegetables.
- All meals are based around spinach and kale because they have a very high amount of lutein that helps with eye health by reducing inflammation.
- It is recommended to focus on vegetables as the main dish and meat as condiments.
- Add fruits, nuts, seeds and legumes to make a wholesome meal.
- Avoiding milk is important, as it is inflammatory.
- Other ingredients to avoid are sugar, canned foods, anything in a box and processed foods, which are highly inflammatory.
- A basic recipe for a smoothie for two – one banana, three handfuls of spinach, a little bit of almond milk and water. You could add avocado, chia seeds, flax seeds and then some frozen fruits, like berries.
- It takes about a week to see changes in eye health after transforming to a plant based diet, because switching from the modern diet will have a period of withdrawal symptoms, similar to quitting smoking or alcohol.
- With the “Green Smoothie Challenge” after the initial withdrawal symptoms of detoxing in a week or two, one will start to see results and feel incredible in six months.
- Day 1-7 is the “unbearable stage” with the challenge, where you will have more gas, poop more and feel awful, and you might hate the smoothies.
- Day 7-14 of the challenge is called the “uncomfortable stage”, where you will not feel great but you will start to feel better.
- Day 14-21 is the “unstoppable phase”, where you actually start to crave your green smoothie and feel worse if you stop because your body will start to miss the nutrients.
- One could get addicted to artificial sweeteners as well as stevia in protein powders and end up with headaches and other problems.
- It is important to hydrate well first thing in the morning with 16-32 ounces of water. This is called the “Hyper-hydration stage”, which boosts your metabolism by about 30% and puts the body in a feel-good state.
- Drinking about 16 ounces of water before every meal helps jumpstart your digestive system by lubrication.
- Using computers and smart devices we expose ourselves to blue light even at night, which keeps us awake longer and reduces deep sleep at night.
- Shutting off electronics and wearing blue light blocking glasses two hours before bedtime will increase melatonin production to help you go to sleep faster and deeper into restorative REM sleep.
- Blue light is emitted with any device that has a flat panel, including televisions.
- People can install blue light filters on smart devices starting at 7 or 8pm so that your brain and body starts making enough melatonin as part of your sleep-wake cycle.
- Prescription glasses can be made with 20-30% blue-light blockers and are sold on amazon and all the way to 100% blockers, which have orange lenses.
- 100% blocking lenses change the color blue to grey.
- Blue light blocker coating does not impact melatonin because it is still allowing 80% blue light to pass through to the eyes.
- The long-term effect of blue light is macular degeneration.
- It’s important to keep our eyelids clean to avoid blepharitis, or morning eye discharge due to inflammation of the eyelid from overgrowth of a normal bacteria.
- You can use a hypochlorous acid solution to avoid overgrowth of bacteria in eyelids.
- Hormonal imbalance plays a big role in dry eyes.
- Essential fatty acids can be used in smoothies through the four staple foods – avocados, chia seeds, flax seeds, hemp seeds – to moisturize dry eyes.
- Fish oils must be used only from pure, wild, GMP-certified, fulfilment and sustainable sources.
- It is important to supplement with minerals and vitamins because most vegetables are now growing in depleted soils.
- Grounding is the act of walking barefoot outdoors in the sand in order to neutralize and balance the body.
- Using our devices and screens too close to our eyes can lead to short-sightedness.
Dr.Carri Drzyzga's Information:
Positive Productivity Podcast With Dr.Jenna Zigler 0
Jenna and her husband, Travis, are optometrists who realized they wanted to do more with their expertise. Click here to listen as Jenna shares their journey, mission, and vision for the future!
9:15 Jenna talks about the mission of EyeLove
11:00 The value of curing preventable blindness
21:15 Jenna’s vision for the next five years
22:52 Income vs. Income – words of advice
Connect with Jenna:
Facebook: Dry Eye Syndrome Support Community
YouTube: Eye Love YouTube Cannel
Rational Wellness Podcast 046: Eye Health with Dr. Travis Zigler 4
Rational Wellness Podcast 046
Dr. Travis Zigler speaks about Eye Health with Dr. Ben Weitz.
- Click here to view Podcast on YouTube
- Rational Wellness Podcast website with show notes
- Click here to listen on Itunes
1:42 Dr. Zigler mentions some of the conditions of the eye that we can improve with diet and lifestyle changes, including dry eye, macular degeneration, gluacoma, and cataracts.
3:01 Dr. Zigler explains how to prevent and treat dry eye, including an anti-inflammatory plant based diet with lots of leafy green vegetables. He also recommends drinking a lot of water to hydrate the body and the eyes. Warm compresses and massage to the eyelids can help to soften and facilitate the flow of oil from the Meibomian glands that help to keep the eyes moist. Dr. Zigler also recommends using a spray cleanser on the eyes using hypocholous acid to kill bacteria that often develop on the eyelids and cause blepharitis.
6:52 We discussed the benefits of taking omega 3 fish oils and eating fish as well as whether it is a good idea or not to rub coconut oil into the eyes for lubrication.
9:22 There are a number of medications that can result in dry eyes, including antihistamines, decongestants, antidepressants, birth control medications, and blood pressure medications. Thyroid disease (both hyper and hypo), high blood pressure, and diabetes also tend to lead to dry eyes. Also post-menopausal hormone imbalances can result in dry eyes.
11:42 We talked about how blue light from computers, TVs, and phones results in dry eyes and macular degeneration.
13:50 Dr. Zigler explained dietary approaches that can help to prevent or reverse macular degeneration, including supplements like lutein, zeaxanthin, astaxanthin, zinc, and omega-3s, and eating kale and spinach.
18:00 We discussed whether exercises for the eye, such as the Bates method, can help to improve eyesight. There is also something called vision therapy that helps the eyes to work together better and helps with conversion insufficiency, conversion excess, and a few other problems.
21:45 Dr. Zigler explained what causes floaters in the eye.
23:30 We discussed glaucoma and what can be done about it.
28:20 Dr. Zigler discussed cataracts, what causes them, such as vitamin C deficiency, and what to do about cataracts.
Dr. Ben Weitz is available for nutrition consultations specializing in Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders like IBS/SIBO and Reflux and also specializing in Cardiometabolic Risk Factors like elevated lipids, high blood sugar, and high blood pressure as well as chiropractic work by calling the office 310-395-3111.
Do You Wake Up With Dry, Irritated Eyes? 0
Dry, Irritated Eyes
One important question I always ask patients is: Are your eyes more dry in the morning or later in the evening?
Dry eye in the evening may seem more intuitive: Working on the computer, long hours, watching TV surfing the internet all result in decreased blink rates and frequencies, thus resulting in drier, more irritated eyes.
But what about if you wake up in the morning with red irritated eyes? One might think that after a full night of sleep your eyes should feel rested and NOT be red or irritated?
One of the most common causes for red dry eyes in the morning is nocturnal lagophthalmous (NL). With NL, the lids do not close all the way while sleeping, and thus a small white part of the eye may be visible and exposed to the air.
I personally deal with this issue. My wife once took a picture of me sleeping on my back, and you could clearly see about ⅓ of the whites of my eye. Just think: If you’re sleeping with a ceiling fan or heater going in your room, that air is blowing across an exposed eye all night! The result is red irritated eyes in the morning.
So what to do about it? There are many products available to create a chamber of sorts around the eye to prevent evaporation or buffering of the ocular surface. Moisture chamber goggles, appropriately named, is one such product that when used, created a protective barrier around the eyes. Lubricating ointment can be placed in the eye beforehand as well to create a second protective barrier.
A great option to try before spending money on a mask, and a great way to see if YOU have NL, is to use a piece of Glad Press and Seal wrap. Note this is not just any Glad wrap, as it MUST be the Press and Seal type. Wash your face before bed. The wrap will not stick to oily dirty skin. Cut out a square of the wrap and mold it to the contours of your face. One great option is to do just one eye at night. See how your eyes feel compared to one another in the morning. If the eye that was covered feels and looks better than the eye that was not covered, you very well may suffer from NL, and a more permanent mask may be a good solution for you!