How our diet affects our hearing health

Source: Robyn Lewis, Content Writer for UK Hearing Care

Many people worry over their diet for lots of reasons, reducing cholesterol, risk of type 2 diabetes and lowering blood pressure among them, but can the food you eat affect your hearing as well? There has recently been research into the relationship between our nutritional intake and our audio abilities that have had some startling results. In the International Journal of Audiology, Spankovich and Le Prell report “a significant relationship between dietary nutrient intake and susceptibility to acquired hearing loss is emerging”.

With this in mind, a few simple additions to your diet may help to fight the risk of acquired hearing loss. These minerals do not have attributes solely attached to auditory health and may even improve other aspects of your health alongside your ears.

Omega 3 & Vitamin D
Though your body makes Vitamin D naturally through exposure to sunlight, it may not always be enough if you live in less sunny areas or do not get exposed to it often. Vitamin D regulates the absorption of Calcium and facilitates a healthy functioning immune system. An increased and stronger immune system lowers the risk of infections and the damage they will do to your hearing. Omega 3 is also known as an essential fat that cannot be made within the body. According to The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, consumption of Omega 3 and food associated with it significantly reduce the risk of hearing loss. Omega 3 strengthens the blood vessels in our ear’s sensory systems, therefore improving the ear’s efficiency. Vitamin D is found in fatty fish (like salmon or tuna), certain mushrooms (such as Portobello) and egg yolks. Omega 3 is most prevalent in many of the same foods as Vitamin D but also in walnuts, flax seeds and chia seeds. This is easy to incorporate into your regular diet by increasing the amount of fish you eat per week (especially the oily fish previously mentioned) and making salads more exciting with seeds and nuts, or perhaps whizzing up a smoothie that includes chia seeds and fruit.

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