Prof. Mares's research aims to provide evidence that will inform people of all ages about the role of food throughout the life span in preserving vision as we age. Reducing the development and progression of vision limiting conditions such as cataracts, diabetic retinopathy and macular degeneration could substantially lower the economic burden associated with treating these conditions once they reach advanced stages. Current evidence indicates that eating nutrient-dense foods, especially green vegetables, can cut the risk of cataracts in half and impact age-related macular degeneration. Putting limited resources into buying locally produced vegetables and other food products, rather than relying on costly nutrient supplements which have lower likelihood of benefit has the potential to strengthen local and state economies in sustainable ways while concurrently improving health and reducing health care costs.