You are what you eat. Everybody understands that the right nutrients can have a tremendous impact on your physical and mental health. So, it is only natural to wonder whether you could tailor your diet to support hearing health. The answer is yes. Indeed, you can eat specific food that can provide the nutrients your hearing system needs to perform.
However, the right diet doesn’t replace essential hearing protection. If you wish to preserve your hearing, it is essential to work closely with an audiologist who can provide dedicated advice. Additionally, your diet will not prevent hearing loss if your ears are exposed to considerable damage. But a healthy diet can also be a crucial part of a healthy and hearing health-conscious lifestyle.
Here are five foods that can promote hearing health and how to best use them to stave off damage.
Folate for hearing health
Folate and folic acid are commonly associated with women who wish to become pregnant or who are pregnant. However, the benefits of folic acid do not stop at pregnancy. Food rich in folic acid promotes cell growth and blood circulation in the body. Therefore, it can significantly contribute to maintaining the health of the hair cells inside your inner ear.
Where can you get folic acid?
Liver and green leafy vegetables such as spinach and broccoli are excellent sources of folate. Additionally, you can also kidney beans, chickpeas, and lentils, which are naturally rich in folic acid. Fortified cereals also contain high amounts of folate.
Magnesium for hearing health
According to research conducted at the University of Michigan Kresge Hearing Research Institute, individuals who consume high amounts of magnesium with vitamin A, C, and E are better protected against noise-related hearing loss. It’s crucial to caveat the statement, though: Magnesium will not prevent hearing loss from prolonged exposure to loud sounds. But, magnesium is effective in creating a protective barrier for the inner ear hair cells.
Additionally, magnesium deficiency depletes the blood vessels, causing them to shrink, depriving the hair cells inside the inner ear of oxygen.
Where can you get magnesium?
Magnesium is naturally present in many fruits and vegetables, such as bananas, potatoes, spinach, tomatoes, broccoli, and artichokes. Besides, you can also find it in dark chocolate and whole grains food. Avocados are also a renowned source of magnesium.
Potassium for hearing health
Potassium plays a crucial role in regulating fluid build-up in your blood and body tissue. Conductive hearing loss, which is caused by an obstruction in your hearing system, could be the result of fluid build-up inside your ear. While the issue is treatable with medication or surgery, it could be prevented altogether with a potassium-rich diet.
Where can you get potassium?
Potassium food tends to include fruits such as apricots, melons, and raisins, and vegetables, including spinach, lima beans, and potatoes. Additionally, yogurt and milk are fantastic go-to foods for a potassium-rich diet.
Zinc for hearing health
Zinc boosts your immune system, supporting wound healing and cell growth. Zinc deficiency can make you more susceptible to ear infections and other viral ear issues. Additionally, zinc can also help repair minor damage to the hair cells in the inner ear.
Where can you get zinc?
Zinc is naturally present in nuts, dark meats, and some legumes. Cashews, almonds, and peanuts, naturally present in granola bars, are a great source of zinc. Red meat such as beef, or even oysters, contains high amounts of zinc too. Finally, split peas and lentils will also help increase your zinc consumption.
Omega 3s for hearing health
A diet rich in omega 3s food can prevent or delay the onset of age-related health degeneration, such as hearing loss.
Where can you get omega 3s?
Omega-3 fatty acids are present in seafood. Fish oil is one of the most popular sources of omega 3s. However, you can also find plant sources such as chia seeds and flaxseeds, as well as walnuts.
Other healthy food to prevent hearing loss
Experts also recommend vitamins D and B-12 to support your hearing health and immune system. The body produces vitamin D after safe exposure to direct sunlight. But in dietary forms, it can be found in mushrooms, eggs, and fortified cereals and milks.
Vitamin B-12 typically comes from supplements. Fortified dairy products can be a reliable source of vitamin B-12.
Top recommendations for hearing health
A healthy diet will help preserve your ears from hearing loss. But it can’t replace essential precautions such as:
- Avoiding prolonged unprotected exposure to loud noises
- Getting your hearing tested regularly
- Using earplugs or noise-canceling devices whenever necessary
If you are worried about hearing loss, we invite you to book an appointment with one of our expert audiologists at Hearing Solutions of Louisiana, using the phone number (337) 607-0630.