Our ears are extremely sensitive. Well they have to be to capture a plethora of sound waves that make us take pleasure in our world. Keeping at bay the continuous noise pollution and ear infections is fundamental to maintaining the delicate complexities of our hearing mechanism. What most people are unaware of is that there are dietary ways to halt or even prevent hearing loss or an impaired hearing ability. Eating a healthy, well balanced diet, rich in Minerals, Antioxidants and Vitamins is the most underrated way of maintaining your hearing health. Who needs Harry potter’s extendable ears now when you can include these foods in your diet to supplement your hearing health?
Omaga 3 Fatty Acids
You hear based on how your brain interprets the signals from your ear. Omega 3 rich foods are known to improve the coordination of your ears and brain as well as maintain the blood vessels of your ear’s sensory system. They are also renowned for their inflammation reducing properties and help combat ear infections. Foods rich in omega 3 acids include Salmon, Herring, Fish cod liver oil, Flax seeds, Coconut oil, Trout, Sardines, Chia seeds and Walnuts. Studies have proven the correlation of consuming omega 3 rich foods and hearing health, especially prevention of age related hearing loss.
One of the irrevocable damages of a Vitamin B deficiency is a loss of hearing. A vegan diet, although offering innumerable benefits, is unfortunately devoid of Vitamin B, which is normally contained in Animal based products. For individuals observing a vegan diet, Vitamin B has to be supplemented by Vitamin pills as well as dietary sources such as, Nori, milk, cheese, shellfish, eggs, poultry and meat.
Studies have proven that magnesium helps fight the free radicals that develop as a result of noise explosions, and forms a barrier for the hair cells of the inner ear. A deficiency of magnesium causes the blood vessels in the sensory system to shrink, bereaving the ear cells of sufficient oxygen and impairing their ability to process sounds. Certain fruits and vegetables such as bananas, spinach, leafy greens, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sweet potatoes and artichokes are rich magnesium sources.
Potassium serves many important functions in our body and its deficiency is definitely not lost on the ears as well. A low potassium level is linked to a loss of hearing, since Potassium helps the interaction of cells in the inner ear which contributes to sound perception. Increasing blood potassium levels aids in the prevention of hearing loss. This is why you need to supplement your diet with potassium rich foods such as bananas, oranges, spinach, apricots, papaya, potatoes melons and lentils.
The antioxidant property of Vitamin C and E proves beneficial in preventing a hearing impairment which accompanies old age by fighting off the free radicals. Vitamin C boosts the immune system which prevents you from contracting ear infections, while vitamin E protects the blood vessels surrounding the ear cells. A healthy immune system maintains general body health and fights off infections. To stock up on these miraculous Vitamins, supplement your diet with citrus fruits, such as oranges and lemons, bell peppers, papaya, broccoli and almonds.
A subsequent consumption of Folate reduces your risk of hearing loss by promoting an overall health of the inner cells. A Folate deficiency leads to hearing loss accompanied by Tinnitus. Since Folate is a water soluble vitamin, it doesn’t stay in the body and needs to be consumed on a daily basis to promote hearing health. Sources rich in Folate include leafy green vegetables, such as spinach, kale and asparagus.
Zinc boosts your body’s immune system and is also responsible for cell growth and healing wounds. Another benefit of zinc is that it combats germs that lead to pesky ear infections and common cold. Some studies suggest its effectiveness in treating tinnitus in individuals with normal hearing. However, always consult your physician before taking a Zinc supplement since it might interact with antibiotics and diuretics. Zinc rich foods include, dark chocolate, oysters, lentils, split peas, beans, peanuts, almonds, cashews, chicken, pork and beef. Try making homemade granola bars to get your fill of zinc.