Your Tinnitus Symptoms Could be Triggered by Your Diet

Man looking for snacks in the refrigerator late night.

You’re starving so you go to your fridge for a little bite to eat. Are you craving a salty treat… how about crackers? Chips sound good! Hold up. Maybe this leftover slice of cheesecake.

On second thought, maybe you should just eat a banana. Of course, a banana is a much better health choice.

When it comes to the human body, everything is connected. So maybe it’s not a big surprise that what you eat can impact your ears. If you consume a high sodium diet, for example, it can elevate your blood pressure and that can escalate your tinnitus symptoms. Research is verifying this idea, suggesting that what you eat could have a direct impact on the manifestation of tinnitus symptoms.

Your diet and tinnitus

The official publication of the American Auditory Society, called Ear and Hearing, published research that observed the diets of a wide variety of individuals. Your danger of certain inner ear conditions, including tinnitus, increases or diminishes based on what you eat. And, based on the research, a lack of vitamin B12, in particular, could raise your potential for developing tinnitus.

There were other nutrients besides B12 that were connected with tinnitus symptoms. Your chance of developing tinnitus also increases if your diet is too rich in fat, calcium, and iron.

That’s not all. The researchers also noted that dietary patterns may also cause tinnitus symptoms. In particular, diets high in protein seemed to reduce the likelihood of developing tinnitus. It also appeared that diets low in fat and high in fruits and veggies had a positive impact on your hearing.

So should you make a change to your diet?

You would need to have an extremely deficient diet in order for that to be the cause, so modifying your diet alone likely won’t have a substantial impact. Your hearing is far more likely to be impacted by other things, like exposure to loud noise. But your general health depends on a healthy diet.

This research has revealed some practical and meaningful insights:

  • Safeguarding your ears takes many approaches: The risk of tinnitus and other inner ear disorders can be lowered by eating a healthy diet, according to this study. But that doesn’t mean the entire risk has gone away. It simply gives you better odds of avoiding ear conditions. So if you want to decrease the risk of tinnitus even further, you’ll have to take a comprehensive approach to protect your ears. This may mean wearing earmuffs or earplugs to make sure volume levels stay safe.
  • Nutrients are important: Your overall hearing health is going to be effected by your diet. It certainly seems as if an overall healthy diet will be good for your ears. So it’s not hard to see how issues like tinnitus can be a result of poor nutrition. This can be especially important to note when people aren’t getting the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that they require.
  • Quantities vary: Certainly, if you want to keep your ears healthy you need a certain amount of B12 in your diet. You will be more vulnerable to tinnitus if you get less than this. But getting more vitamin B12 isn’t necessarily going to make your ears healthier. Getting too little or too much of these nutrients could be damaging to your hearing, so always talk to your doctor about any supplements you take.
  • Always get your hearing checked by a professional: If you’re suffering from hearing loss or tinnitus, get your hearing checked. We can help you figure out what type and degree of hearing loss you’re dealing with and how to best address it.

Research is one thing, real life is another

And, lastly, it’s important to note that, while this research is exciting and fascinating, it’s not the last word on the matter. More research needs to be carried out on this topic to validate these results, or to refine them, or dispute them. How much of this relationship is causal and how much is correlational is still something that needs to be identified, for instance.

So we’re a long way from claiming that a vitamin B12 shot will prevent tinnitus. Keeping that ringing in your ears from appearing from the start may mean taking a multi-faceted approach. One of those facets can definitely be diet. But it’s crucial that you take measures to protect your hearing and don’t forget about established methods.

If you’re suffering from tinnitus, contact us. We can help.


The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.