Macca talks macular degeneration

  • Why this 78-year old Beatle doesn’t need glasses 
  • The truth about eye yoga 
  • Three simple exercises that boost your eyesight

It’s been another week of carnage and misery in the global news.

However, there was a quirky health story this week.

You probably saw it, as it was all over the media, from Woman’s World to The Telegraph to The Daily Mail, to the NME (of all things!).

These very different publications all revealed that former Beatle, Paul McCartney, does EYE YOGA to avoid having to wear glasses.

Now, I have to admit, Macca is in pretty fine fettle for a 78-year old. He’s still got his hair. He’s still putting out albums and he’s still able to knock out an hour’s worth of hits on stage.

Here’s what’s encouraging about Macca…

It’s not as if he has been a saint when it comes to looking after his health – for instance I don’t think he’s as much of a fitness fanatic as The Rolling Stone’s Mick Jagger.

Astonishingly, 75-year old Jagger works out for three hours a day, six days a week, alongside ballet, weight training, Pilates, and jogging.

…and this was AFTER heart surgery.

McCartney is not like that.

His form of ageing seems much more achievable for regular people (despite him being a living legend).

In a recent podcast interview he explained why he has taken up eye yoga.

“I learned off some yogi in India,” he said. “He explained that your eyes are muscles, whereas your ears aren’t so you can’t exercise your ears, but your eyes, you can.”

McCartney’s exercises consist of looking up, down left and right, sideways, diagonal, far away and then close.

He does these as repetitions, much like you might exercise in the gym.

The aim is to slow, halt and even reverse macular degeneration.

McCartney told the podcast that he has shown his methods to other people and helped improve their eyesight too.

This all might sound bizarre – Beatle turns natural eye health guru – but if you like you can watch him demonstrate this way back in 2010 in this YouTube Video.

McCartney Eye Yoga

Ironically, the video is blurry which makes you strain to watch it!

Joking aside though, while it might seem to be silly, natural eyesight improvement is something I’ve written about in the past.

Why Poor Vision Is Not Always Inevitable

It is possible to radically improve your eyesight and to slow down, or prevent, age-related eye problems.

For instance, the top three causes of vision loss are:

  • Macular degeneration – 23%
  • Cataracts – 19%
  • Glaucoma – 7%

These can be preventable, as you can see in this report by Rachel Linkie: Save Your Sight

She explains that many vision problems occur because of a lack of vital nutrients which your eyes need to stay strong.

For instance, in one large-scale study, researchers found that people who had low levels of just three particular nutrients were 70% more likely to get macular degeneration.

As well as looking at what you eat you can also add eye exercises to your daily routine, too, just like Macca, and get some interesting results.

And yes – STOP THE PRESS! – I can admit to you now that I often resort to ‘eye yoga’ (though I’ve never called it that).

I do it when I’ve been at my computer for far too long… or reading research papers with TINY writing long into the wee-small hours…

I’m an obsessive reader and can’t pull myself away once I get stuck into something. Because of this I get quivering eye-muscles and sometimes dizziness.

So here are some of the methods that I’ve found to help…

  • The figure of eight

This one is useful for exercising your eye muscles. You simply imagine that there’s a big 8 in front of you (about ten feet away). You then trace the shape of the 8 with your eyes only (not moving your head).

Next, turn the 8 on its side and do the same again, tracing it from left to right, then right to left.

Do this every morning or night to build up those eye muscles and reduce headaches and strain.

  • Bar swings

Stand in front of something with slats or bars in it (a window with bars, railings or a fence). Focus on something in the distance then begin to shift your weight between each foot, while staying focussed on the object in the distance.

After a minute, look down to the left and focus…

…then look up to the right and focus.

Then go back to the middle again.

Now look down to the right and focus, then look up to the left and focus.

Then repeat the whole procedure another two times.

This exercise will help to strengthen your focus.

Finally, one that’s a little more relaxing…

  • The eye massage

Close your eyes and massage your eyelids with your fingers, doing little circular motions for two minutes. Press lightly as pressure stimulates your eyes.

Simple stuff but it works for me anyway.

If you have any of your own exercises, let me know and I’ll be happy to share them in the newsletter.

That’s it from me – have a great weekend!