DIET AND FITNESS:

Meniere's Disease --- Ideal Diet to
Reduce Symptoms
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January 11, 2010, last updated December 18, 2012

By Susan M. Callahan, Associate Editor
and Featured Columnist


Meniere’s disease just may be the most disabling disease
you've never heard of. Meniere’s disease is a disorder of the
inner ear which can cause severe dizziness or loss of
consciousness, vertigo, nausea, vomiting, hearing loss, a
feeling of fullness in the ear, and an acute roaring or ringing
sound in the ear (
tinnitus).  Meniere’s usually only affects
one of your ears.  

According to the National Institute on Deafness and Other
Communication Disorders, an agency which is a part of the
National Institutes of Health, 615,000 Americans now suffer
from Meniere’s disease and over 45,000 new cases are
diagnosed every year.

The exact cause of Meniere’s disease is unknown, although
researchers believe Meniere’s is caused by an increase in the
fluid pressure in the inner ear. The technical name for this
fluid imbalance is endolymphatic hydrops.  When the causes
of the fluid loss are known, the correct term for the condition
is Meniere’s syndrome. When the cause is not known
(idiomatic), the condition is known as Meniere’s disease.

Meniere’s disease responds well in many cases to dietary
changes. What foods help to reduce the symptoms of
Meniere’s disease? Is there an ideal diet to treat Meniere’s
disease and reduce the chances of recurrence?

Based on research studies, certain foods do in fact reduce
the severity and risk of repeated occurrence of Meniere’s
disease. Meniere’s disease does not always respond to
dietary changes, according to the Cochlear Fluids Research
Laboratory, in Washington University, St. Louis, Kansas.  
Although these dietary changes are effective in many cases,
they may not be effective in your case.

Your best approach is to try the changes, and keep a careful
log of whether your symptoms improve. That said, here is the
list of those foods which you should consider including in
your diet and foods and foods which you should avoid if you
have Meniere’s disease or you want to reduce your chances
of developing the disease:

























1.    
Reduce the Salt In Your Diet. Numerous research studies
have established that reducing the amount of salt you eat
helps to correct the fluid imbalance in your inner ear which
accompanies Meniere’s disease. A 1985 study by the National
Committee on Hearing and Equilibrium examined 54 patients
with Meniere’s disease. After being treated for 24 months
with a combination of a low-salt diet and doctor-prescribed
diuretics, 79% of the patients showed either complete or
nearly complete vertigo control.

In general, medical authorities recommend reducing your
intake of salt  below 1500 milligrams of salt per day  to
relieve the symptoms of Meniere’s disease. As we have seen
in other articles on salt intake,
Americans consume almost 10
times the daily recommended limits for salt intake.

2.        Avoid Caffeine. Caffeine is dehydrating which affects
the fluid in your inner ear. You should avoid all foods high in
caffeine, including coffee, caffeinated soda, chocolate. Many
teas are high in caffeine and for this reason do not make a
good substitute for coffee in you suffer form Meniere’s.

3.        
Drop the Alcohol. Alcohol, like caffeine, is dehydrating.
Key studies have linked to consumption of alcohol with
increased severity of Meniere’s disease symptoms.

4.        
Control Your Blood Sugar. In a 1984 study led by Dr.
M.V. Kirtane of the Hinduja National Hospital and Medical
Research Centre, in Mumbai, India, 31 patients with Meniere’
s syndrome underwent 5 hour glucose tolerance tests. The
study found that almost 70% (67.7%) of those patients had
glucose imbalances, suggesting a link between uncontrolled
blood sugar and the incidence of Meniere’s syndrome. Know
what your
normal blood sugar levels should be and follow a
proper diet and exercise regime to keep them normal.

5.        
Carbohydrates. A 1992 study by Dr. C. A. Proctor and
Dr. D. B. Proctor published in the Ear, Nose and Throat
Journal identified that insulin is important in regulating the
levels of sodium retained in renal tibules and, therefore,
indirectly in the inner ear. The researchers recommended
that, in addition to monitoring your salt intake, that those at
risk for Meniere’s disease also closely monitor your intake of
carbohydrates.

6.        
Potassium-Rich Foods. Potassium rich foods help your
body to control your salt levels. Consider including bananas,
lentils and other
potassium-rich foods in your daily diet to
reduce your risk for developing blood pressure and Meniere's.


7.
Eating Every Other Day a Cure for Meniere's? The practice
of deliberately restricting your caloric intake periodically has
been associated with improving a wide rage of medical
conditions, including Meniere's disease. Although this practice
should be studied further, several key studies have in fact
shown a link between deliberate calorie restriction and
improved health. One such study was conducted in 2006 by
Drs. Johnson and Laub from Louisianna State University
Medical Center.  Starting in 2003, they conducted
experiments in which they restricted daily caloric intake of
participants to 20% to 50% of normal and found that, within
two weeks of starting this pattern, the participant's health
symptoms improved. Among the conditions which were
observed to improve were cases of Meniere's disease.

The Louisianna researchers are continuing this research,
supported by the National Institutes of Health, on the use of
calorie restriction in fighting disease.

In the meantime, try cutting back on the amount of calories
you eat every other day to see of your symptoms improve.







You're just getting started. Learn more about the relationship
between your diet and your risk for other diseases and
conditions:
Why Am I Dizzy?-Top 10 Causes and Remedies/
How Much Is Too Much Salt? /Sugar-The Disease Connection
/
Are Diet Sodas Bad for Your Health? / Ideal Breakfast for
Diabetics / Ideal Breakfast for Arthritis /Healing Foods Links
/
 Foods That Shrink Your Waist / Foods That Lower
Cholesterol/ VLDL-The Other Cholesterol/ Foods That
Reduce Blood Pressure

Index of Articles on
This Site


Snoring Linked to
Stroke

How to Stop Bad Breath

BRAIN HEALTH



DIETS AND FITNESS

HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH
SALT

HOW MUCH SALT IS IN MY
FOOD

SALT CONTENT OF COMMON
FOODS

150,000 DIE FROM EXCESS
SALT

I HAVE HIGH BLOOD
PRESSURE!

FOODS THAT LOWER YOUR
BLOOD PRESSURE

QUINOA-THE NEW
SUPERFOOD

INFLAMMATION INSIDE
THE BODY

FAT--IT'S ALIVE!

WHY WE GO SOFT IN THE
MIDDLE

WHY EUROPEANS ARE
THINNER

>VEGETARIAN RECIPES


MY HEART ATTACK

CANCER SURVIVORS


MONEY AND BUDGET

RESOURCES

AMERICAN HEART
ASSOCIATION

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bananas help lower salt levels in your body
Eating bananas can restore a normal salt balance in your body which in turn can help
Meniere's disease.