iet is important for everyone, but diet is especially critical for those suffering from vertigo. The diet you eat can either help or hinder your recovery and quality of life.
This article will discuss what to eat and avoid when you have vertigo to get the most out of the best diet for vertigo.
Before we start dieting, it's important to know what vertigo is. It can be described as "the dizzying sensation of spinning when one does not actually move."
1 out of every 33 people experiences vertigo at some point in their life. In the U.S. alone, it's estimated that over 15 million people live with vertigo.
Vertigo is classified as an inner ear disorder based on a patient's symptoms. For example, when experiencing dizziness without any head or body movement, this could be caused by benign positional vertigo (BPPV). A doctor would need to perform a physical exam and ask questions to help diagnose the cause.
It is also classified as either short-term or long-lasting, depending on how long it takes for symptoms to subside.
Short-term vertigo usually lasts less than one day, while longer-lasting forms of vertigo can last up to three weeks, in rare cases even more.
Cause Of Vertigo
Vertigo is a medical condition that causes someone to feel off-balance or not steady on their feet. There are many different reasons for vertigo, including injury, toxins in the body from alcohol or drugs, lack of sleep, anxiety disorders, low blood sugar levels, inner ear conditions, and other health problems.
Most of the cause of vertigo is due to a benign condition called Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) which is usually caused by the head being turned or tilted in a certain way and then moved suddenly.
Meniere's disease is also a cause of vertigo and is characterized by fluctuating hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), dizziness, nausea, vomiting, or severe head pressure.
Another cause of this problem is a more serious condition called Vestibular Disorder, which an infection can cause of the inner ear and is characterized by severe balance problems and unsteadiness.
Symptoms Of Vertigo
The most common symptoms of vertigo are:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Blurred vision.
- Spinning sensation
Vertigo is more common in people over the age of 60 because as we grow older, our balance system changes. It can also be a symptom of an inner ear infection or other medical condition that affects your hearing and equilibrium.
Diet For People With Vertigo
Diet for vertigo is very important, as diet can affect how severe it is. For example, alcohol and caffeine intake has been shown to worsen vestibular symptoms such as dizziness or nausea in people who suffer from this condition
It is important to note that a diet for vertigo does not have a specific diet, but rather certain foods should be avoided and others have eaten.
Foods To Eat
- Whole Grains, such as brown rice or quinoa
- Low-fat dairy products, like unsweetened yogurt and skim milk
- Lean Protein Sources: turkey breast without skin; fish with low mercury content
- Sweet Potatoes
- Leafy Greens, such as spinach or kale
- Beans: black beans; lentils; chickpeas; edamame (soybeans)
- Fresh Fruits: apples; oranges; pears
- Vegetables: carrots, green beans, broccoli (include these in diet)
- Whole-wheat spaghetti
- Chicken breast without skin, grilled salmon with low mercury content (e.g., salmon)
- Eggs: omega-enriched eggs are better than non-omega enriched; egg whites only
Foods To Avoid
- Avoid eating any of the following foods:
- Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and other cruciferous vegetables. These can cause inflammation in your digestive tract which may worsen vertigo symptoms.
- Citrus fruit like grapefruit or oranges as well as tomatoes because they contain a lot of acids unless you have been instructed otherwise by a dietician.
- Spicy foods could also trigger a flare-up in some people with vertigo because of their high acid content and irritating spices such as pepper or hot chili peppers.
- Dairy products may cause mucus to build up in your nasal passages, which can trigger vertigo.
- Sugar, alcohol, and other foods that cause blood sugar levels to spike or drop too quickly may make symptoms worse.
- Fatty foods will slow down your digestion which can also worsen vertigo problems.
Avoid eating foods containing any of the following ingredients:
- Wheat flour, yeast, or sourdough they can cause stomach problems. This is because these substances contain gluten which may be hard for people with coeliac disease to digest.
- Artificial sweeteners such as diet sodas and diet gelatin desserts are often made with aspartame.
- MSG or other substances that are linked to vertigo, such as monosodium glutamate.
- Alcohol may trigger a headache due to its dehydrating effects, and the resulting rebound spike in blood sugar levels can worsen dizziness when standing up.
- Caffeine, which is known for causing symptoms like increased heart rate, palpitations, and agitation.
- Salty foods such as bacon or ham can worsen symptoms of vertigo because they cause fluid retention.
How Vertigo Affects You
Vertigo can affect you in a way that is both physical and emotional.
IT can affect your physical balance like spinning in circles, or it can cause you to feel like the ground is moving. It leaves many people feeling dizzy and confused.
The emotional effect of vertigo on your body is more difficult because diet can affect mood and stress levels, which in turn have an impact on the physical symptoms you experience.
For some people, avoiding certain foods or eating healthy will help reduce the severity of these feelings while others find it does not help at all.
When Can You See A Doctor
If you are experiencing vertigo that persists after a head injury or an ear disease, it is important to go see your doctor.
They may be able to determine the underlying cause for this type of vertigo and then develop a treatment plan accordingly.
Early diagnosis and treatment of vertigo can help decrease the severity as well and the frequency of the episodes.
If you are experiencing vertigo as a result of an inner ear infection, your doctor may prescribe medication to help control and cure it.
They may also recommend changing your diet into a healthy diet that will aid in relieving some other common symptoms for those who still have dizziness or lightheadedness even after finishing their antibiotic treatment.
Vertigo can also be a symptom of stroke, so if you are experiencing vertigo and have other symptoms that may indicate a stroke such as difficulty speaking or walking, seeing a blurred vision in one eye, severe headache with neck stiffness, nausea, or vomiting. These signs should always prompt an emergency visit to the hospital.
Vertigo can often be caused by diet and is usually temporary. While there are many different diet recommendations, the diet recommends eating healthy fats, dense carbohydrates like whole grains or vegetables, high-quality proteins like eggs or chicken without skin with minimal salt content and sodium per day.
Foods to avoid include coffee, alcohol, acidic fruits, yogurt, diet soda, and fatty foods. You should also avoid eating for at least three hours before bedtime and make sure that you are not consuming too much salt or sugar in your diet.
If the diet does not work or if the vertigo is accompanied by other symptoms such as hearing loss, speech difficulties, or visual disturbances then it may be necessary to see a doctor. To complicate matters, many medications can also cause vertigo so it's important that you avoid this diet if you are on medication or speak to your healthcare provider about the best diet for vertigo before taking any dietary steps.