Celebrate National Eye Donor Month!

March is National Eye Donor Month and we’d like to honor the thousands of eye donors and their families who have made the decision to give the gift of sight through tissue donation.


Eversight Illinois- Bloomington is central Illinois’ very own eye bank.  It has carried on the mission of restoring sight in communities throughout central Illinois since its inception in 1952.  Initially, the eye bank was named the Watson Gailey Foundation Eye Bank and was part of Mennonite Hospital.  Now, many years later, the eye bank is part of a network of community eye banks called Eversight Illinois that provides the resources and expertise for eye tissue donation, transplantation, and research.

Gailey Ophthalmologist, Dr. Gregory Halperin, serves as one of the Medical Directors of Eversight Illinois-Bloomington and is proud to offer cornea transplant surgery.   Dr. Halperin, as well as, Gailey’s Dr. Robert Lee, offer hope and restored vision through transplant surgery for people with eye diseases like Fuchs’ Dystrophy.

It is only through the gracious act of tissue donation that we are able to perform life-altering, vision-restoring procedures like cornea transplant surgery.   Although we have a wealth of technology at our fingertips, we still need people like you to say ‘yes’ to donation. Take time to celebrate with us this month – discuss donation with your family, friends and colleagues and encourage them to become a registered eye, organ and tissue donor.  Find out more at eversightvision.org/Illinois/.

Eye-Healthy Smoothie Recipes

There are many studies that show that consuming more fruits and vegetables may help protect against age-related eye problems.
Why not pack the essential vitamins and Omega 3 fatty acids that give your eyes the nutrition they need in to a delicious smoothie? Yes, please!

Beta-carotene from fruits and vegetables is converted in the body to vitamin A, which is essential for eye health. Foods that are rich in beta-carotene include carrots, spinach, kale, broccoli, tomatoes, mangoes, apricots, pumpkins and just about all orange and yellow fruits and vegetables as well as dark, leafy greens. Red grapes and citrus fruits are also hydrating, and may improve acute vision problems caused by dehydration. We also like to incorporate flaxseeds which are one of the very best sources of Omega 3 fatty acids. These fatty acids help regulate the fluid retention and flow in our bodies, preventing dry eye and normalizing eye pressure to reduce the risk of glaucoma.

Smoothies are such a yummy way to enjoy fruits and veggies. Here are just a few popular smoothies that will be sure to support your eye health and be tasty, too!


Strawberry Banana Green Smoothie

2/3 cup spinach

2/3 cup kale

1 cup water

1 banana

5 strawberries, frozen


Blend the greens and water first until the greens are completely liquefied. Add the fruit and blend until thoroughly combined. Enjoy immediately!


Blueberry Peach Smoothie with Flaxseeds

3/4 cup blueberries

1/2 cup almond milk

1/2 cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt

1 Tbsp. ground flaxseeds

2 Tbsp. honey

1 cup frozen peaches


Blend all ingredients in a blender until pureed and smooth, stirring several times. Serve immediately.


Mango Green Smoothie

1 ½ cups frozen mango pieces

1 ripe banana, cut into chunks

1 cup spinach

3/4 cup almond milk


Place all ingredients in your blender. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.


Vision Source. March 4, 2015. Visionsource.com.

Incredible Smoothies. 2017. Incrediblesmoothies.com.

Ophthalmologist or Optometrist – Who does what?

There are two main types of eye doctors: optometrists and ophthalmologists. Confused about who does what?

Here’s a look at how they’re different.

An optometrist is an eye doctor who has earned the Doctor of Optometry (OD) degree. Our optometrists at Gailey Eye Clinic examine eyes for both vision and health problems and correct refractive errors by prescribing eyeglasses and contact lenses. They also participate in pre- and post-operative care if you have eye surgery performed by an ophthalmologist.

An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor (MD) who specializes in eye and vision care. They are trained to perform eye exams, diagnose and treat disease, prescribe medications and perform eye surgery. Ophthalmologists generally complete four years of college, four years of medical school, one year of internship, and a hospital-based residency in ophthalmology. Many ophthalmologists have specialties in certain areas. Gailey Eye Clinic’s physician specialties include cataract, cornea, glaucoma, retina, iLASIK, and certain oculoplastic procedures.

One type of doctor isn’t better than the other. It just depends on your needs. Their jobs may overlap, and they most definitely will collaborate to take care of your vision. Learn more about the doctor specialties and read all of our doctors’ bios at http://gaileyeyeclinic.com/about/doctors-staff/.


AAOPOS. 2011. Aapos.org

Bothered by Eye Floaters?

Floaters appear as black spots that can be semi-transparent or dark and appear to float in front of your vision.

Some people are born with floaters. For others, floaters occur with age, when the tiny pieces of the eye’s gel-like vitreous break loose within the inner back portion of the eye. When we are born and throughout our youth, the vitreous has a gel-like consistency. As we age, the vitreous begins to dissolve and liquefy to create a watery center.  Some undissolved gel-like particles will occasionally float around the more liquid center of the vitreous, which is why we refer to them as floaters. Even though floaters can be a nuisance, most people become used to them and they rarely cause problems with your vision.

Occasionally an increase in floaters can be a sign of problems inside the eye. If you notice a sudden increase in floaters – either one or more large ones or a shower of tiny ones – call Gailey Eye Clinic immediately at 1-800-325-7706. This may be a sign of a retinal detachment or other serious problems.


The College of Optometrists. 2000-2017. Lookafteryoureyes.org.

Cleaning and Avoiding Foggy Glasses this Winter

Cold weather is upon us. For those who wear glasses, nothing is more frustrating than having your eyeglasses fog up when you come in from the cold. Aside from the frustrations, foggy glasses are also potentially dangerous for those who work in jobs that require clear vision at all times. Here are a few solutions to help stay fog-free this winter:




Essilor of America, Inc. 2016. essilorusa.com.

VINT & YORK. 27 October 2015. Vintandyork.com.

Why is My Eye Twitching?

Twitching eyes may not seem serious from a medical perspective, but they can be seriously annoying! Eye twitching is the involuntary, spontaneous contraction among the fine muscles of the eyelid. In most cases, minor eye twitching resolves as spontaneously as it began and isn’t associated with any disease. However, sometimes a twitching eye can last for weeks or even months.

It is relatively easy to find the cause of this bothersome problem. Your twitching eye could be triggered by:

Usually a few lifestyle-related questions can help determine the likely cause of the twitching. Eye strain, or vision-related stress, can occur if you need glasses, a change in prescription, or are consistently working in front of a computer. If your eye is twitching and it feels dry, see your doctor for an evaluation as there are many treatments for this.

See your doctor if the twitching won’t go away, despite the remedies above. If you experience twitching that completely closes an eyelid or spasms that involve other facial muscles, see your doctor immediately.




Dr. Matthew Alpert. November 2015. VSPEnVisionNewsletter.com.

Mayo Clinic Staff. 21 January 2016.  mayoclinic.org.

Green Bean Casserole

Treat your taste buds and your eyes with this delicious green bean casserole, one of the most requested holiday dishes! Fresh green beans are an excellent source of several vitamins that contribute to healthy eyes.  Green beans may not show it, but they contain the same pigments that give vegetables their red, yellow and orange colors. These pigments are called carotenoids. They all function as antioxidants, which helps to reduce the risk of developing serious Age-Related Eye Disease.

While you can substitute canned or frozen beans, they lose some vitamins during processing. We love to stir-fry green beans with any other favorite veggies or meat, but we’ll definitely be cooking up some green bean casserole this holiday season! Enjoy the delicious recipe below.


1 tablespoon butter

1/4 cup diced onions

1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

3 cups sliced fresh green beans

3 cups chicken broth

1 (10 1/2 –ounce) can cream of mushroom soup

1 (2.8-ounce) can French-fried onion rings

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup grated cheddar



  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Boil the green beans in chicken broth for 10 minutes and drain.
  3. Melt the butter in a large skillet. Sauté the onions and mushrooms in the butter.
  4. Add the green beans, mushroom soup, cheese, half of the onion rings, and the seasoning to the onion and mushroom mixture. Stir well.
  5. Pour into a greased baking dish. Spread the rest of the onion rings on top.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes.



Sandi Busch “What Are the Benefits of String Beans?” 21 October 2013. LIVESTRONG.COM.


Don’t Lose Your Vision Benefits!

The end of the year is quickly approaching. Vision insurance benefits do expire! Do you have benefits left to use? A second pair of eyeglasses, prescription sunglasses, extra contact lenses, or eyewear that is specifically designed to fit your lifestyle might be within ready reach if you maximize your vision insurance coverage. Call Gailey Eye Clinic and let us check your benefits to ensure nothing is lost.

If you have a flex spending account, time is running out! Many plans require you to spend all contributions before the new year or risk losing it for good. Use your flex spending credits to save big on iLASIK!

Call Gailey Eye Clinic today at 1-800-325-7706 to discuss your eye care benefits. We are happy to help you with all of your eye care concerns!

Brown Sugar-Glazed Carrots

No, carrots won’t give you X-ray vision or cure blindness, but the vitamins found in the vegetable can help promote overall eye health. Here’s one of our favorite ways to eat this yummy veggie that’s packed with vitamin A and lutein.  Serve these tasty carrots with pork loin and rolls for a delicious meal that everyone will love!



  1. Heat 1 inch of water to boiling in a 3-quart saucepan. Add carrots and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Cover and heat to boiling. Reduce heat. Simmer covered for 15 minutes or until carrots are tender.
  2. While carrots are cooking, heat brown sugar, butter, orange peel, ground cinnamon and another 1/2 teaspoon salt in a skillet over medium heat. Stir constantly until sugar is dissolved and mixture is bubbly. Remove from heat.
  3. Drain carrots. Stir carrots into brown sugar mixture. Cook over low heat about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally and gently, until carrots are glazed and hot. Stir pecans into mixture and serve.


Do Carrots Actually Improve Eyesight?

50552346 - raw carrots with green tops on wooden background

Everyone has heard, “Eat your carrots to have good eyesight!” Is there any truth to this statement or is it a bunch of baloney?  Well, yes and no. Carrots won’t improve your visual acuity if you have less than perfect vision. A diet of carrots won’t give a blind person 20/20 vision. But, the vitamins found in the vegetable can help promote overall eye health. Carrots contain beta-carotene, a substance that the body converts to vitamin A, an important nutrient for eye health.  An extreme lack of vitamin A can cause blindness. Vitamin A can prevent the formation of cataracts and macular degeneration, the world’s leading cause of blindness. However, if your vision problems aren’t related to vitamin A, your vision won’t change no matter how many carrots you eat.

In addition to beta-carotene, carrots also contain lutein, an antioxidant. Foods rich in lutein have been found to increase pigment density in the macula. The greater pigment density in the macula, the better protected your retina is and the lower your risk for macular degeneration.

Because carrots are rich in vitamin A and lutein, they are always a good choice for a nutrient-packed snack. Keep packing those carrot sticks in the school lunches, mom, but don’t expect X-ray vision!


Sarah Winkler “Are carrots really good for your eyesight?” 19 August 2009. HowStuffWorks.com.

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