Thursday, December 23, 2010

Diet - To eat those carrots or to not?

When I was first diagnosed last year, the only thing I was told was to steer clear of any excess Vitamin A in my diet - so no supplements containing Vitamin A. I then asked, "What about foods with Vitamin A?" and my doctor told me that I can't totally exclude foods with Vitamin A in my diet although I can try to limit and not eat excess of foods high in the vitamin, including carrots, which I happen to love and constantly eat!

I decided to look up what foods are rich in Vitamin A so I can try to limit my consumption of them, hoping this would contribute in some way to maintaining my vision. Foods that are rich in Vitamin A include:
Sweet Potato

Most of these foods I enjoy eating (with exception of liver.. gross) and are foods I will usually pick over other foods!

I was also told to take Lutein supplements, which I did at first, though I found they made me quite nauseous and upset my gastro system (if you catch my drift!). So I scrapped them and looked for Lutein rich foods. Such foods include:
Bruessel Sprouts
and any other leafy green vegies

Interestingly, spinach is on both lists so how do you eat just what you want and not what you've been told to avoid? Some days I find I avoid eating carrots and other Vitamin A rich foods, but sometimes I just can't help myself.

Thus the only real advice I received at the time of my diagnosis, I can't really use. I still eat carrots sometimes, and try to eat spinach and other leafy vegies and at this stage this is all I can do.

It was also suggested by friends and my optometrist to follow a macular degeneration diet, although the benefits of sticking to such diet has not been proven for Stargardt's.

I guess all we can do is eat healthily and hope for more knowledge on this area.


  1. Oh my! I am just like yourself! LoL I just love carrots, broccoli, spinach and etc! I actually thought that all those contain antioxidants and are meant to be the right food for Stadgardts patients! Wow..Gotta look up more information on this one..

  2. I know it's almost impossible to not eat Vitamin A but then eat mroe lutein! I was told to eat lots of spinach and leafy greens and to avoid the carrots.. It's definately very confusing!

  3. Hi, I just got diagnosed with Stargardt's and I can oy think about what's going to be the worst! Is yours better or worse. I'd appreciate if you'd help me understand this more. Thank you