The majority of us have been advised to eat our carrots for good eyesight. But how about foods that are good for hearing and ears? Did anyone ever give you advice about those? Children can now be told what to eat for healthy hearing and ears; wise advice that we should all follow.

Numerous factors may result in loss of hearing, including age, noise, and infections. The following foods include specific nutrients that can prevent or slow certain types of hearing loss.

Workers at elevated risk for ear damage include musicians, machinery workers, and other people exposed to loud noises. Foods rich in the mineral magnesium such as bananas, potatoes and artichokes may help protect the hearing of people with an occupation or pastime exposing them to loud sound. Foods rich in the mineral magnesium help protect against noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) although it has not been established why or how it works.

Believe it or not, fish such as salmon or trout which contains omega 3 fats and vitamin D, has been demonstrated in medical studies to reduce age-related hearing loss. Other smart omega 3 fats and vitamin D choices are the anchovies on your pizza and those cans of tuna probably sitting in your pantry. Consumed two times per week, any of these can help you hear better in your later years.

Exposure to loud noise can lead to the generation of destructive free radicals contributing to the death of inner ear hair cells, according to The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. Antioxidants and folic acid can help avoid free radical damage. Common foods that are rich in both antioxidants and folic acid include asparagus, nuts, spinach and eggs.

The good news is that even some foods we regard as sweets, such as dark chocolate, are good for hearing health. Age-related hearing loss has been connected to zinc deficiencies, and zinc is an ingredient in dark chocolate. Any foods containing zinc will do, so if you don’t care for dark chocolate, try some oysters! instead!

Along with teaching our kids and grandkids to consume carrots for good eye sight, now we can teach them to protect their hearing and decrease possible hearing loss with specific food suggestions.

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