The benefits of a healthy diet are long and rewarding. We've see which foods can aid us in preventing Alzheimer's disease, which are important to consume for our health as the chances of this condition increase during our retirement years.
However, have you ever considered eating for your hearing?
It's a commonly forgotten sense, until we're hit with problems. Just like the risks of Alzheimer's disease, changes in our hearing can be more prevalent as we get closer to retirement age. Called age-related hearing loss, or presbycusis, it can have detrimental results on both our physical and mental wellbeing if left untreated.
While getting a regular hearing test can help detect the early signs of a hearing loss condition, it's still of upmost importance that we consume a well-balanced diet. This is for the benefit of our heart, brain and our hearing- and almost everything else.
The ABCs, or rather, ACEs
Let's start at the beginning of healthy hearing – though, this time, it's not the alphabet, but rather, vitamins.
There are many things in our lives that can have an impact on our health, and not always a positive one. A lot of them are called free radicals, and can be found in pollution, cigarette smoke and ultraviolet radiation rays. To combat these free radicals, we have antioxidants.
Antioxidants are found in the form of vitamins and minerals, namely A, C and E, and can be consumed via healthy food. For example, citrus fruits contain high vitamin C content.
An overexposure to free radicals may lead to damage to the sensitive hairs in our inner ear, which can harm the signals that they send to our brain. This is when hearing loss occurs.
Getting enough nutritious antioxidants in our diet can slow down and even prevent the harm caused by free radicals, so that our hearing doesn't bear as much damage.
There's also more benefit to getting a healthy balance of all three of these antioxidants in our diet, along with magnesium. A study by the University of Michigan has found that these additions to our diet can significantly prevent noise-induced hearing loss, and reduce the rates of sensory cell death in our ears.
Protect and enhance
It's the act of prevention which can enhance our senior years, as we embrace retirement. You can actively participate in conversations with your loved ones, and aren't left feeling isolated.
Eating healthy for your ears also benefits many other aspects of our physical and mental health. You'll find that your hearing is just as important of a sense as all the others!