You’re feeling hungry so you look in your fridge for a snack. Are you craving a salty treat… how about crackers? Oooo, chips! There’s a leftover piece of cheesecake that would be yummy.
Perhaps you should just go with a banana on second thought. After all, a banana is a much healthier option.
Everything is interconnected in the human body. So it’s probably not a huge surprise that your diet can impact your ears. If you consume a diet high in sodium, for instance, it can elevate your blood pressure and that can increase your tinnitus symptoms. Research is verifying this idea, suggesting that what you eat could have a strong impact on the development of tinnitus.
Your diet and tinnitus
The official publication of the American Auditory Society, called Ear and Hearing, published research that looked at the diets of a wide variety of individuals. The data shows that what you eat might increase or diminish your susceptibility to certain inner ear conditions, tinnitus among them. And your chance of getting tinnitus increases, particularly when your diet is lacking vitamin B12.
Vitamin B12 wasn’t the only nutrient that was connected with tinnitus symptoms. Your chance of getting tinnitus also increases if your diet is too rich in fat, calcium, and iron.
That isn’t all. The researchers also observed that dietary patterns could also cause tinnitus symptoms. For example, your risk of developing tinnitus will be decreased by a diet high in protein. It also appeared that diets low in fat and high in fruits and veggies had a positive impact on your hearing.
Does this suggest you need to change your diet?
Diet alone isn’t likely to drastically change your hearing, and actually, you’d most likely have to have a fairly severe deficiency for this to be the cause. Other problems, like exposure to loud sound, are much more likely to affect your hearing. That said, you should attempt to maintain a healthy diet for your general health.
This research has discovered some practical and meaningful insights:
- Always get your hearing checked by a professional: If you’re suffering from hearing loss or tinnitus, get your hearing checked. We can help you determine what type and degree of hearing loss you’re coping with and how to best treat it.
- Safeguarding your ears takes many approaches: As reported by this study, eating a good diet can help reduce your vulnerability to tinnitus and other inner ear conditions. But that doesn’t mean the entire risk has disappeared. It simply gives you better odds of avoiding ear conditions. So if you want to decrease the chance of tinnitus even further, you’ll have to take an inclusive approach to protect your ears. This will frequently mean safeguarding your hearing from loud noise by wearing earplugs or earmuffs
- Nutrients are important: Your overall hearing health will be impacted by your diet. Naturally, your hearing will be helped by a healthy diet. But more than that, we can easily see how malnutrition could lead to problems such as tinnitus. And with people who are lacking the essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients they need, this is especially true.
- Quantities vary: Certainly, if you want to keep your hearing healthy you need a certain amount of B12 in your diet. Going below that could increase your susceptibility to tinnitus. But your ears won’t necessarily be healthy just because you get enough B12. Always talk to your physician about any supplements you use because getting too little or too much of these nutrients can be bad for you.
Real life doesn’t always mirror the research
While this is exciting research, it’s significant to mention that there’s more to be said on the subject. In order to confirm and improve the scope of these conclusions, more research will still need to be done. We’re not sure, for instance, how much of this connection is causal or correlational.
So we’re a long way from saying a vitamin B12 shot will prevent tinnitus. It might mean taking a multi-faceted approach in order to prevent tinnitus from the start. One of those facets can definitely be diet. But it’s crucial that you don’t forget about proven methods, and that you pay attention to safeguarding your hearing health as much as you can.
We can help, so if you’re suffering from hearing problems, call us.