When it comes to avoiding injury or accident or performing well in an athletic situation, having a fast reaction time is crucial. While some performance may be based on natural ability, reaction time is heavily reliant on what’s called “visual processing speed.” This neuro-visual function helps determine the speed in which you react to a stimulus, but what is it exactly and what, if anything, can be done to improve it?
What Is Visual Processing Speed?
Visual processing speed is the ability to process visual information rapidly, and it’s considered an essential element for reacting quickly in dynamic situations. In other words, visual processing speed is how quickly your brain is able to recognize what your eyes see and react to that perception. It relies on how quickly your eyes can see something, process what it is, and translate that information to your brain to make a decision on how to act.
Why Does Visual Processing Speed Matter?
This visual function is extremely important for athletes. Visual processing speed allows players to quickly read each situation and adapt their performance for the best results. For example, baseball players at-bat get a fraction of a second to identify the spin of the ball and its relative speed to determine whether they should swing or not. The faster they can process this information, the better their chances of getting on base.
You may be thinking, “That’s great, but I’m not trying to hit a 99 MPH fast ball. Why does visual processing speed matter to me?” Well, we’ve got a scenario for you.
Let’s say you’re driving along when all of a sudden, a car suddenly cuts over in front of you. Now, your eyes need to quickly recognize this action, assess the relative distances and speed of the important elements involved in the incident, and relay that information to your brain with enough time for your brain to tell your body to appropriately react to the situation – likely swerving and braking (and maybe a honk if it was a close call). Visual processing speed helps this whole telephone game maintain efficiency and helps you avoid the crash, injury, or worse.
Can You Improve Your Visual Processing Speed?
Contrary to some beliefs, reaction time and visual processing speed are more than just genetic blessings. There are a few ways to increase this visual function:
For athletes in particular, there’s something called sports vision training (SVT). SVT is a group of programs with numerous types of stimulants that help athletes run through different scenarios to practice recognizing and reacting quicker. This is just another element added to their training.
However, there is a way to increase visual processing speed without enrolling in SVT, and it’s accessible to everyone, including athletes.
That’s right! Eating the right foods packed with eye-healthy nutrients can also increase your visual processing speed! Specifically, an antioxidant called dietary zeaxanthin (zee-uh-zan-thin) has been proven in clinical trials to increase visual processing speed and reaction time by 10%! However, for these kinds of dramatic results, you’d need to eat over 50 ears of corn a day! That’s why many eye doctors, sports dietitians, and athletes turn to supplementation.
The amount of dietary zeaxanthin needed to increase visual processing speed (20 mg) can only be found in EyePromise® eye vitamins. As the #1 optometrist-recommended eye vitamin brand, EyePromise creates revolutionary formulas for a wide array of eye health needs, including athletic performance. These NSF Certified for Sport performance vitamins include at least 20 mg of dietary zeaxanthin needed to get these incredible results.
Vizual Edge Pro™
EyePromise Vizual Edge Pro is the most elite eye vitamin available, and its daily convenience packet includes the best of the best of EyePromise vitamins. With nutrients like zeaxanthin, lutein, Omega-3s, Vitamin D, and more, this vitamin can also:
- Improve visual acuity
- Increase contrast
- Improve glare recovery
- Reduce light sensitivity
- Reduce dryness and irritation caused by environmental factors
EyePromise Vizual Edge Chewable is a one-a-day chewable eye vitamin formula for those who prefer not to swallow pills. With some of the same high-quality, natural ingredients as Vizual Edge Pro, this is a simpler formulation that still packs an eye-healthy punch. Add this citrus-flavored tablet to smoothies or protein shakes for a seamless addition to your routine, and you’ll see:
- Improved visual acuity
- Increased contrast
- Improved glare recovery
- Reduced light sensitivity