Several natural nutritional compounds have been shown to accelerate dark adaptation and optimize healthy night vision:
Vitamin A: Vitamin A (including its carrot-sourced carotenoid form beta carotene) is likely the most well-known nutrient for promoting night vision. Night blindness is an early warning sign of vitamin A deficiency. Vitamin A is also important because it is an essential component of rhodopsin, the photopigment that enables night vision in rod cells.
Lutein and Zeaxanthin: These carotenoid compounds promote sharper vision at night, optimize contrast acuity in dim light and improve vision in low-light conditions. As protective antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin also defend photoreceptors. One study found that lutein blocked 40% of damaging UV light frequencies from reaching night-vision rod cells.
Cyanidin-3-glucoside (CG3): A natural flavonoid found in berries, CG3 has been found to accelerate rhodopsin turnover -- promoting faster dark adaptation while optimizing overall night vision.
Bilberry: Supplying anthocyanin antioxidants, bilberry was consumed by British fighter pilots during WWII to improve night vision and enhance dark adaptation. Bilberry's antioxidants also protect the retina's photoreceptors, helping to maintain healthy rod cells.
Black Currant Anthocyanoside (BCA): Research has suggested that BCA concentrate appears to promote a significant improvement in dark adaptation along with accelerated recovery of peak visual acuity.