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S. Parvinroo1,2


1. Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy, Guilan University of Medical Sciences; 2. Cardiovascular Diseases Research Center, Department of Cardiology, Heshmat Hospital, School of Medicine, Guilan University of Medical Sciences

Corresponding Author: Shirin Parvinroo, Department of Pharmacognosy, School of Pharmacy, Guilan University of Medical Sciences, shirinparvinroo@yahoo.com


Dear Editor

In Iranian Traditional Medicine (ITM), physicians considered health preservation as a main duty.   Their recommendations have been proposed in order to keep the organs and the whole body healthy, considering useful and risk factors. The aim of this manuscript is to introduce some recommendations for maintaining eye healthy based on ITM literature in two different parts of nutritional and nonnutritional sections.
One of the most important substantial strategies of ITM in maintenance of health and also treatment of diseases is paying enough attention to the nutrition and diet (1). According to this viewpoint, foods may even have positive and negative effects on the eye health. There are some categories of foods with the adverse effects of weakness of eye sight: Mobakhkherat which means vaporizers (2) are the main classes of mentioned foods (3). In fact they have some inherent humidity in their structure which is converted to the vapor during digestion.
This produced rising gas can cause special kind of headache in addition to affecting eye sight (4). Some of the mobakhkherat include onion (Allium cepa L.), garlic (Allium sativum L.), kidney bean (Phaseolus vulgaris L.), fababean (Vicia faba L.), lentil (Lens culinaris Medik), cabbage (Brassica oleracea L.), dill (Anethum graveolens L.), basil (Ocimum basilicum L.) and garden cress (Lepidium sativum L.) )5). Also salty and spicy foods and lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.), vinegar, sour apple (Malus orientalis Uglitzk. ex Juz.), wine, beef, ripe olive (Olea europaea L.) are harmful for eye sight (4).
Surprisingly in ITM, there are some recommendations (moslehat which means correctors) for modifying adverse effects of foods and medicines, so by using specific kinds of correctors, the harm of foods that affect eyesight can be omitted (5).
Beneficial foods for eyes are: foods that prohibit rising of vapors from stomach (4) such as cabbage (Brassica oleracea L.) seeds, avishan-e shirazi (Zataria multiflora Boiss.), coriander (Coriandrum sativum L), quince (Cydonia oblonga Mill.), oleaster (Elaeagnus angustifolia L.), jam of emblic (Phyllanthus emblica L.), pear (Pyrus communis L.), jam of chebulic myrobalan (Terminalia chebula Retz.) which is prepared by honey and jam of pumpkin (Cucurbita pepo L.) (5). Another category of beneficial foods for eyes are easily digested and supplied blood with good quality (4) such as soft- boiled egg yolk, lamb, chicken, partridge, quail, pomegranate (Punica granatum L.), sweet apple (Malus orientalis Uglitzk. ex Juz.) and wheat (Zea mays L.) bread (5).
Nonnutritional factors for eye health are divided into two categories: harmful and beneficial agents. Both of them can be in relation to environment, lifestyle, feelings and individual habits. Behavioural and environmental risk factors for eye health include dust and smoke, very hot and cold weather, dusty winds, too much sexing, gazing to the glossy, bright and white things, reading the texts written by too small fonts, very crying, sadness, fear, anger, writing between evening and sunset, overeating, sleeping on a full stomach and immediately after dinner, sleeping on the back for a long time specially outdoor, doing much evacuation such as phlebotomy, cupping and vomiting, sleeping and staying awake too much and bathing overmuch.
Nonnutritional beneficial agents for eye health are: opening eyes under the clear and sweet water which must be cold and warm for youth and oldsters respectively, using kohl by the contents of esmed (stone with content of lead), tutty (impure oxide of zinc), the water of fennel and marjoram, seeing beautiful objects, smelling musk, gazing to emerald and also green objects, using drop prepared from sweet and sour pomegranate juice which is heated in honey inside the oven (4).
This manuscript shows that according to ITM literature the eyesight weakness or strength can be related to different factors, especially intake of particular foods that has been highlighted insufficiently in the modern medicine and it can be of research interest in the future and may help to improve eye health.



1.    Avicenna, A. Ghanoon dar Teb (Canon). First ed., vol 1. In: A. Sharafkandi (Trans.). Sorush Press, Tehran, pp. 2010a;378-392
2.     Javadi B., Emami S.A. Basics of Traditional Pharmacy: based on Ibn al-Nafis’s views. Mashhad university of Medical sciences Publication, Mashhad, 2015;pp.122.
3.     Avicenna, A. Ghanoon dar Teb (Canon). First ed., vol 3. In: A. Sharafkandi (Trans.). Sorush Press, Tehran, 2010b;pp. 306.
4.     Nazem Jahan, M.A.K.. Exire Azam. Vol.1. Almaee publication,Tehran, 2014;pp. 444-446.
5.     Aghili-Khorasani, M.H. Makhzan-Al-Advia. Institute of Medical History, Islamic and Complementary Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran 2009.