How to Increase Video/Photo Resolution by Dieting?
High-end digital SLR camera makers like Nikon, Canon and Sony brag about their megapixels and sensor photosites, but at some point it becomes moot. The same applies to high resolution 1080p HDTVs. Of all the laws of diminishing returns that affect the amount of detail a person can see, be it in a digital photograph or 1080p Blu-ray disc, your eyes trump all.
In the past half decade, I’ve dealt with several camera softness issues: (1) Excellent Tamron, Tokina and Sigma lenses from the film era are too flawed for modern high megapixel sensors. (2) There’s increasingly erratic quality control from lens manufacturers. (3) Certain digital cameras seem to drift in accuracy over time; a big issue since I’m mostly a f/2.8 shooter. (4) And finally, my eyes are just not as perfect as they used to be.
There’s nothing more frustrating that seeing a blurry image through the viewfinder, and not being 100% sure if the camera or lens are at fault, or if your own eyes (or even contact lenses, in my case) have degraded.
The Photographer Diet
The December 2011 issue of Nutrition Action Health Letter (NAHL) had an excellent article addressing this very issue, giving some advice on how to protect your eyes from long-term damage by simply monitoring your diet. Certain chemicals in your retina and lenses need to be replenished and fortified — specifically lutein and zeaxanthin.
Keeping your eyes strong, clear and focused might be as easy as upping your intake of fruit and vegetables — especially certain leafy greens — while reducing your intake of empty calories (colas, donuts, pizza, etc) and less-healthy foods. The top ten suggested veggies includes:
- Kale (11.9 grams per half cup, cooked)
- Spinach (10.2 grams per half cup, cooked)
- Chard (9.6 grams per half cup, cooked)
- Collard greens (7.3 grams per half cup, cooked)
- Spinach (3.7 grams per half cup, raw)
- Peas (1.9 grams per half cup, cooked) – frozen or fresh, not canned
- Broccoli (1.2 grams per half cup, cooked)
- Romaine lettuce (1.1 grams per half cup, raw)
- Brussels sprouts (1.0 grams per half cup, cooked)
- Zucchini (1.0 grams per half cup, cooked)
If you’re a photographer or videographer, you’re probably kicking yourself for not heeding mom’s insistence to eat your whole serving of peas or broccoli.
Cooking Greens for Flavor
I find some of those listed veggies to be rather gross, and wouldn’t eat them if you paid me. Kale, zucchini and brussels sprouts are about as appealing as eating moldy cardboard.
As a native southerner, collard greens were a staple food growing up, and something I always hated to eat. To me, it was slimy, stringy limp green glop not too dissimilar from the algae growing in the local fishing hole. Many years later I learned that it was simply not being cooked well. The trick to collard greens is to buy them fresh and whole leaf. Never cut, never from a can. Boil them in a pot like you would do with cabbage, preferably with some sausage added for flavor. Add as much or as little seasoning as you want, as the greens have a very rich flavor already.
NAHL also mentioned fish as a food that staves off macular degeneration and cataracts. One of my personal recipes involves frying catfish, swai, salmon or tilapia with a homemade spinach batter. I made some last night, in fact. While most people would make a funny face at the suggestion of spinach batter, few would push the plate away once they tasted it. Fish and greens go well together, far better than fish goes with french fries or rice.
And if you’re wondering what the red stuff is on my broccoli photo … it’s cayenne pepper. Outside of unhealthily smothering it in cheese, nothing makes broccoli taste better than a coating of tear-inducing pepper.
Note that NAHL isn’t some random hippy foodie publication, but the official monthly newsletter of the Center For Science in the Public Interest, a consumer health advocacy group. CSPI is best known as the organization trying to get calories and other nutrition information published on menus at restaurants and fast food venues — something that should have been done decades ago, as far as I’m concerned. (If it’s good for boxes in the grocery store, it’s good for eating establishments.)
While I’ve seen health advice do 180-degree tricks over and over through the years, I’d rather try to improve health as opposed to ignoring it. Some people would poo-poo NAHL and CSPI on political grounds outright, but I think it’s good to at least try to eat well.
Also ask yourself this: Have you ever seen a famous photographer that’s fat?
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