There are lots of health reasons to keep in shape, but did you know weight loss supports better hearing?
Studies have demonstrated that exercising and healthy eating can reinforce your hearing and that individuals who are overweight have an increased possibility of dealing with hearing loss. Learning more about these connections can help you make healthy hearing choices for you and your family.
Obesity And Adult Hearing
Women are more likely to experience hearing loss, according to a study carried out by Brigham And Women’s Hospital, if they have a high body mass index (BMI). BMI calculates the relationship between height and body fat, with a higher number meaning higher body fat. Of the 68,000 women who participated in the study, the amount of hearing loss increased as BMI increased. The heaviest people in the study had a 25% greater instance of hearing loss.
In this study, waist size also ended up being a dependable indicator of hearing impairment. Women with bigger waist sizes had a higher risk of hearing loss, and the risk increased as waist sizes increased. As a final point, participants who engaged in frequent physical activity had a decreased incidence of hearing loss.
Obesity And Children’s Hearing
A study on obese versus non-obese teenagers, conducted by Columbia University Medical Center, concluded that obese teenagers were twice as likely to develop hearing loss in one ear than teenagers who weren’t obese. Sensorineural hearing loss, which happens when the delicate hair cells in the inner ear are damaged, was common in these children. This damage led to a decreased ability to hear sounds at low frequencies, which makes it difficult to understand what people are saying in crowded settings, like classrooms.
Hearing loss in children is particularly worrisome because kids often don’t realize they have a hearing problem. There will be an increasing danger that the issue will get worse as they become an adult if it’s not treated.
What is The Connection?
Obesity is related to several health problems and researchers believe that its connection with hearing loss and tinnitus lies with these health issues. Poor circulation, diabetes, and high blood pressure are some of the health problems caused by obesity and linked to hearing loss.
The inner ear’s anatomy is very sensitive – comprised of a series of little capillaries, nerve cells, and other delicate parts that have to stay healthy to work properly and in unison. It’s essential to have strong blood flow. This process can be hampered when obesity causes narrowing of the blood vessels and high blood pressure.
The cochlea is a part of the inner ear that receives sound vibrations and delivers them to the brain for translation. The cochlea can be harmed if it doesn’t get the proper blood flow. If the cochlea is damaged, it’s normally permanent.
Is There Anything You Can do?
Women who remained healthy and exercised frequently, according to a Brigham and Women’s Hospital study, had a 17% lowered likelihood of getting hearing loss in comparison with women who didn’t. Reducing your risk, however, doesn’t mean you need to be a marathon runner. Walking for two or more hours per week resulted in a 15% decreased chance of hearing loss than walking for less than an hour.
Your entire family will benefit from eating better, as your diet can positively affect your hearing beyond the benefits gained through weight loss. If there is a child in your family who has some extra weight, talk with your family members and put together a routine to help them shed some pounds. You can teach them exercises that are enjoyable for kids and work them into family gatherings. They might enjoy the exercises enough to do them on their own!
Consult a hearing specialist to find out if any hearing loss you might be experiencing is associated with your weight. Better hearing can come from weight loss and there’s help available. This person can perform a hearing exam to verify your suspicions and advise you on the measures needed to deal with your hearing loss symptoms. If necessary, your primary care doctor will suggest a diet and exercise program that best suit your individual needs.