Eat more carrots for good eye sight, is probably something most of us were told as young children. But what about foods that are good for ears? Did anyone ever tell you about those? We can finally tell our kids what to eat for good hearing and ears; advice that’s probably prudent for us to follow as well.

Hearing loss can be caused by several factors including noise, infections and age. Nutrients in the following foods can help prevent some common reasons for hearing loss.

Interestingly, research has shown that fish such as trout and salmon that possesses omega 3 fats and vitamin D, may slow age-related hearing loss. Other smart choices for fish containing omega 3 fats and vitamin D include the tuna sitting in your pantry and the anchovies that many of us hold from our pizza. For a good chance of better hearing later in life, consume any of these twice per week.

Professionals at an increased risk for hearing damage include musicians, machinery workers, and others exposed to loud noise at work. Foods loaded with the mineral magnesium like bananas, artichokes and potatoes may help safeguard the hearing of individuals with an occupation or hobby exposing them to loud noise. Even though the precise mechanism isn’t understood, animal and human research studies have demonstrated that magnesium helps safeguard against noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL).

Loud noise exposure can trigger the creation of damaging free radicals possibly causing the death of delicate inner ear hair cells. Folic acid and antioxidants can help protect against free radical damage. Particular foods are especially abundant in antioxidants and folic acid – among them eggs, asparagus, spinach and nuts.

The good news is that even some foods we think of as sweets, such as dark chocolate, are beneficial to hearing health. Age-related hearing loss has been linked to zinc deficiencies, and zinc is an ingredient in dark chocolate. If you do not like dark chocolate, try some oysters; any foods which contain zinc will do!

In addition to encouraging our kids and grandkids to eat carrots for better eyesight, now we can help them protect their hearing and minimize possible hearing loss with specific food suggestions.

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