Tag: food

The Nutrients Behind Healthy Hearing

The Nutrients Behind Healthy Hearing

As we learn more about how nutrition affects health, many folks are taking a functional medicine approach to fine-tuning their diets — eating the right foods to prevent certain conditions. You’ve no doubt heard of heart-healthy foods as well as special diets to manage or prevent diabetes, but did you know that you can also eat for healthy ears? Read on to find out more!

The Nutrients Behind Healthy Hearing

Eating a balanced diet comprised of whole foods is always a good idea and promotes total body health, but certain nutrients are associated with healthy ears, including magnesium, potassium, zinc, folate, B12, and vitamins C, E, and A. Of these, two deserve special recognition for their overall link to hearing health and the fact that a majority of people don’t get enough of them.

Magnesium

This mineral is abundant throughout the body and assists in almost every cellular process. It is particularly important to nerve function, which is good news for your hearing. Hair cells of the inner ear communicate directly with the auditory nerve, sending signals to the brain after a sound wave passes through the eardrum. Keeping these cells healthy and strong offers protection against noise-induced hearing loss. Additionally, magnesium deficiency often causes high blood pressure, anxiety, heart disease, and depression, which are all conditions associated with hearing loss.

Potassium

Like magnesium, potassium is involved in hundreds of cellular processes throughout the body, including nerve function, but it’s most known for regulating fluids. Because it creates positive ions when dissolved in water, potassium is considered an electrolyte. It works in tandem with sodium to ensure the right amount of fluid is moving in and out of cells. If an imbalance occurs, the endolymph in the cochlea may be disrupted, leading to hair cell damage. Boosting potassium is a contraindication only for individuals with kidney disease. It is widely recommended that almost everyone else increase their intake of potassium.

Chocolate Almond Avocado Pudding

Fortunately, some of the tastiest foods in your kitchen are high in magnesium and potassium. For a healthy treat that tastes much more decadent than it is, consider whipping up a batch of this chocolate almond pudding from the mother-daughter duo over at Simply So Healthy. All you need is a blender and the following ingredients:

  • 1.5 c. almond milk
  • 0.5 c. coconut cream
  • 3 Tbsp. granulated Stevia or monk fruit (feel free to substitute your favorite sweetener, but add it to taste, because the quantity needed may vary)
  • 1 medium avocado (6 oz.), peeled and pitted
  • 3 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • unsweetened coconut flakes for garnish
  • sliced almonds for garnish

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour into serving-sized cups, cover, and refrigerate for at least five hours before serving.
  3. Garnish with unsweetened coconut flakes and sliced almonds.
  4. Enjoy!

Each serving provides approximately 405 mg of potassium and 78 mg of magnesium. That’s about 12% and 20% of your daily values, respectively. To bump it up to 23% and 27%, add half a cup of sliced banana!

For more healthy-hearing tips or to schedule a hearing consultation, contact us today!

January is National Soup Month! Celebrate with 5 healthy-hearing recipes

January Is National Soup Month ó 5 Healthy-Hearing Soup Recipes to Get You in the Spirit

Nutrition is a great way to prevent hearing loss. Read on for great soup recipes that will get your hearing health on sure footing for the coming year.

Itís National Soup Month! What better way to kick it off than with an old Italian proverb?

ìSoup does seven things: It takes away hunger, takes away thirst, fills the stomach, cleans the teeth, makes you sleep, makes you slim, and puts color in your cheeks.î

Not enough reason to ladle out some of the good stuff? Hereís another: Many ingredients that go great in soup are great for hearing health!

Soup Recipes for Maintaining Hearing Health

Savor the taste and the hearing health with these five soups that are rich in folate and omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients ensure your cochlea ó the part of your inner ear where sound is converted to signals that get sent to your brain ó is nourished with healthy blood flow.

1. Salmon Chowder

Nothing says ìheart of winterî like a steaming bowl of chowder! This easy-to-make recipe calls for both clam juice and salmon, which has more than three times the hearing-healthy omega-3 content of clam. You still get the familiar hint of clam, but you also get to enjoy the nutrition and taste of salmon.

2. Beef and Cabbage Stew

OK, you caught us ó this is a stew, not a soup. But how can you go wrong with beef and cabbage stew? Itís a hearty bowl of warm winter goodness! Plus, this recipe has three strong sources of folate: cabbage, carrots, and celery. Itíll warm your heart and keep your cochlea happy.

3. Four-Bean Chili

Just when you thought there were no new chilis on the horizon, along comes this little four-bean wonder. No matter where you land in the debate about whether chili is a kind of soup, youíll agree this is a little bowl of heaven. We wonít tell you the secret (youíll have to check out the recipe to find out), but this four-bean chili is a folate fountain with its pinto beans, black beans, navy beans, and kidney beans.

4. Easy Fish Stew

Thereís just no stopping the flavor or nutrition in this rich stew. From more traditional fare like celery and carrots to the zesty bouquet garni, youíll be pleasantly surprised at all this Mediterranean fish stew has to offer. And if that isnít enough reason to try it out, itís rich in both folate (celery, carrots, tomatoes) and omega-3 fatty acids (anchovies, white-fleshed fish). Your cochlea wonít know what hit it!

5. Squash Soup

Donít let the uninspiring name fool you. This butternut squash soup is unassuming but mighty! The ginger, nutmeg, and honey provide just the right balance to the hearty squash foundation. Plus, squash is a good source of folate ó hearing health never tasted so delicious!