The ability to hear sounds, and hear them well, is something most of us take for granted. However, the strength of one’s hearing is liable to be affected by time and environmental factors. Here is a look at six supplements that can support healthy hearing.
Reasons to Preserve Healthy Hearing
Like other basic health issues that can arise due to lifestyle choices and the passage of time (e.g., weight gain, decreased mobility), your hearing can become diminished. It is common for hearing loss to occur with age; nearly half of all people over 65 in the U.S. have some degree of hearing loss. Age-related hearing loss is usually the result of degeneration of the inner ear structures, and it can be increased by hereditary factors.
Exposure to loud noise is also a leading cause of impaired hearing. This can be the result of chronic exposure to noises such as loud music or on-the-job sounds. It can also be caused by exposure to brief but very loud noises such as gunshots.
Supplements to Support Your Hearing
The following nutritional supplements are thought to be helpful in supporting strong hearing. These should be considered in addition to sound choices (pun intended) that sustain healthy hearing, and are not a replacement for them. We recommend talking to a medical professional before taking a supplement for the first time.
Vitamin D is commonly known for its role in supporting bone health. Therefore, it is no surprise that it can support hearing. There are three important tiny bones in the middle ear which must be healthy in order you to have good functional hearing. This is why vitamin D can support hearing health. These three bones actually amplify sound vibrations and pass them along to the inner ear, which leads to sound being registered in the brain.
Zinc can benefit hearing in a few ways. Zinc is useful in preventing infections, which includes ear infections. There are also studies to suggest that zinc can increase the inner ear’s resistance to hearing impairment. Additionally, it can be effective in treating sudden hearing loss and tinnitus (ringing in the ears, which can afflict those with generally healthy hearing.
Magnesium can help prevent noise-induced hearing loss because it combats free radicals, which are produced when one is exposed to loud noises. It might also reduce tinnitus by fostering healthy blood flow in the ears.
Potassium is beneficial as a supplement because it helps convert incoming sound into nerve impulses inside the inner ear. Because potassium levels tend to decline in older age, it is thought that this reduction might contribute to age-related hearing loss.
Folate, or folic acid, interacts with free radicals and other substances in ways that support blood flow to the ears. Studies have linked low levels of folate with hearing loss.
Vitamins C and E work similarly to one another to prevent cellular damage to the ears from free radicals.
The usefulness of certain supplements to prevent hearing loss are worthy of consideration. Yes, reducing exposure to loud noises and making other healthy choices are very important. But with regular supplementation of vitamin D, zinc, or other vitamins or minerals as listed above, the ears can benefit and strong hearing can therefore be supported and preserved.