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5 Things Your Diet Can’t Be Missing To Get Rid Of Lower Back Pain

5 Things Your Diet Can’t Be Missing To Get Rid Of Lower Back Pain

If you have ever suffered from lower back pain, you will know just how painful and debilitating this can be. You may also have tried a host of reactive measures to alleviate lower back pain, from gentle muscle exercises to practicing yoga.

What you may not be aware of, however, is that there are also numerous preventative methods of avoiding back pain. Absorbing the right nutrients from your diet is crucial, for example, as this aids muscular strength and flexibility while ensuring that you maintain a healthy weight.

5 Nutrients That Will Help you to Alleviate Lower Back Pain

The following nutrients also enable your body to repair itself after an injury, which can also negate the risk of long-term complaints and alleviate lower back pain:

1. Calcium

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broccoli

    Let’s start with calcium, which has proven qualities that enable muscles to contract and relax properly (including those that surround your heart and other organs). This can be found in numerous food items, including citrus fruits, soybeans, tofu, salmon and sardines. Leafy vegetables such as kale and broccoli are also viable natural sources, although similar items such as Swiss chard and have a negative impact on consumption rates.

    Both men and women should aim for an average intake of 1,200 milligrams each day, which the body’s utilization of calcium can also be enhanced by the consumption of Vitamin D.

    2. Potassium

    potato

      Potassium is another key nutrient and one that serves the pivotal role of communicating nerve impulses to individual muscle groups (allowing them to stretch and relax as required). Although this is present in meat, grains and dairy products, it remains a seminal component of fruit and vegetables and these should play a central function in your diet. Both men and women also need to consume an estimated 4,700 milligrams each day, so items like bananas and potatoes should be eaten regularly.

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      For preventative care, parents should also encourage the consumption of potassium in their children from an early age. After all, nations like the US and the UK have disproportionately high rates of back pain and among the lowest, recommended quota of fruit and vegetables per day, while schools are already partnering with outlets such as Premier Polytunnels to empower healthier diets among youngsters.

      3. Protein

      chiken-pasta

        While it is proven that a lack of protein can restrict your ability to build muscle mass, it also hinders the body’s capacity for maintaining and repairing damaged tissues. Conversely, a protein-rich diet improves your energy levels and enables muscles to contract properly, so it is important to consume food items such as chicken, fish, beef, eggs and milk. The recommended consumption levels only differ slightly between athletes and everyday citizens, with two or three servings of lean protein enough to maintain functionality.

        If you are a vegetarian or a vegan and cannot consume meat or dairy, consider introducing legumes, seeds, grains and dark, leafy vegetables into your diet.

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        4. Vitamin C

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          We have already touched on the importance of Vitamin D in your diet, but Vitamin C is also a vital component. This nutrient produces collagen, which is a connective tissue that makes up a staggering 90% of all muscle mass in the human form. It can also be found in most fruits, particularly citrus items such as oranges and lemons.

          Once again, vegetables are also a rich source of Vitamin C, with bell peppers, broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, spinach, tomatoes and potatoes all key dietary components. If you are a man, aim for an average consumption level of 90 milligrams each day, while women should target a slightly lower intake of 75 milligrams.

          5. Iron

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          burger

            The relationship between iron and muscle has been well-researched, with the former enabling red blood cells to oxygenate the latter. An iron-rich diet can ensure that your muscle cells supply the required level of oxygen to the core tissues and fibres, enabling them to function well under stress and over a prolonged period of time. This is key to reducing injury, particularly for those who work in physically demanding jobs.

            Iron can be found in red meat, poultry, eggs, fruits and fortified grain products, while it is also a key component of green vegetables such as spinach and broccoli. The recommended, daily consumption level for men and women aged under 51 is 8 milligrams, and this rises to 18 milligrams for women who are older than this.

            The Last Word

            Make no mistake; back pain is a debilitating condition that is thought to cost $34,000 per 100 employees annually in the US alone. It is also considered to be a key contributor to a lack of employee engagement across the globe, so eliminating it can improve your quality of life and improve your career prospects.

            So, if you do find yourself struggling with lower back pain, seek out professional guidance and shape your diet accordingly. If you are pain-free for now, focusing on incorporating these nutrients into your diet and preventing problems in the future.

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            Last Updated on March 25, 2020

            How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

            How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

            When it comes to living long, genes aren’t everything. Research has revealed a number of simple lifestyle changes you can make that could help to extend your life, and some of them may surprise you.

            So, how to live longer? Here are 21 ways to help you live a long life

            1. Exercise

            It’s no secret that physical activity is good for you. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy body weight and lowers your blood pressure, both of which contribute to heart health and a reduced risk of heart disease–the top worldwide cause of death.

            2. Drink in Moderation

            I know you’re probably picturing a glass of red wine right now, but recent research suggests that indulging in one to three glasses of any type of alcohol every day may help to increase longevity.[1] Studies have found that heavy drinkers as well as abstainers seem to have a higher risk of early mortality than moderate drinkers.

            3. Reduce Stress in Your Life

            Stress causes your body to release a hormone called cortisol. At high levels, this hormone can increase blood pressure and cause storage of abdominal fat, both of which can lead to an increased risk of heart disease.

            4. Watch Less Television

            A 2008 study found that people who watch six hours of television per day will likely die an average of 4.8 years earlier than those who don’t.[2] It also found that, after the age of 25, every hour of television watched decreases life expectancy by 22 minutes.

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            Television promotes inactivity and disengagement from the world, both of which can shorten your lifespan.

            5. Eat Less Red Meat

            Red meat consumption is linked to an increased risk of heart disease and cancer.[3] Swapping out your steaks for healthy proteins, like fish, may help to increase longevity.

            If you can’t stand the idea of a steak-free life, reducing your consumption to less than two to three servings a week can still incur health benefits.

            6. Don’t Smoke

            This isn’t exactly a revelation. As you probably well know, smoking significantly increases your risk of cancer.

            7. Socialize

            Studies suggest that having social relationships promotes longevity.[4] Although scientists are unsure of the reasons behind this, they speculate that socializing leads to increased self esteem as well as peer pressure to maintain health.

            8. Eat Foods Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids

            Omega-3 fatty acids decrease the risk of heart disease[5] and perhaps even Alzheimer’s disease.[6] Salmon and walnuts are two of the best sources of Omega-3s.

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            9. Be Optimistic

            Studies suggest that optimists are at a lower risk for heart disease and, generally, live longer than pessimists.[7] Researchers speculate that optimists have a healthier approach to life in general–exercising more, socializing, and actively seeking out medical advice. Thus, their risk of early mortality is lower.

            10. Own a Pet

            Having a furry-friend leads to decreased stress, increased immunity, and a lessened risk of heart disease.[8] Depending on the type of pet, they can also motivate you to be more active.

            11. Drink Coffee

            Studies have found a link between coffee consumption and longer life.[9] Although the reasons for this aren’t entirely clear, coffee’s high levels of antioxidants may play a role. Remember, though, drowning your cup of joe in sugar and whipped cream could counter whatever health benefits it may hold.

            12. Eat Less

            Japan has the longest average lifespan in the world, and the longest lived of the Japanese–the natives of the Ryukyu Islands–stop eating when they’re 80% full. Limiting your calorie intake means lower overall stress on the body.

            13. Meditate

            Meditation leads to stress reduction and lowered blood pressure.[10] Research suggests that it could also increase the activity of an enzyme associated with longevity.[11]

            Taking as little as 15 minutes a day to find your zen can have significant health benefits, and may even extend your life.

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            How to meditate? Here’re 8 Meditation Techniques for Complete Beginners

            14. Maintain a Healthy Weight

            Being overweight puts stress on your cardiovascular system, increasing your risk of heart disease.[12] It may also increase the risk of cancer.[13] Maintaining a healthy weight is important for heart health and living a long and healthy life.

            15. Laugh Often

            Laughter reduces the levels of stress hormones, like cortisol, in your body. High levels of these hormones can weaken your immune system.

            16. Don’t Spend Too Much Time in the Sun

            Too much time in the sun can lead to an increased risk of skin cancer. However, sun exposure is an excellent way to increase levels of vitamin D, so soaking up a few rays–perhaps for around 15 minutes a day–can be healthy. The key is moderation.

            17. Cook Your Own Food

            When you eat at restaurants, you surrender control over your diet. Even salads tend to have a large number of additives, from sugar to saturated fats. Eating at home will enable you to monitor your food intake and ensure a healthy diet.

            Take a look at these 14 Healthy Easy Recipes for People on the Go and start to cook your own food.

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            18. Eat Mushrooms

            Mushrooms are a central ingredient in Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s GOMBS disease fighting diet. They boost the immune system and may even reduce the risk of cancer.[14]

            19. Floss

            Flossing helps to stave off gum disease, which is linked to an increased risk of cancer.[15]

            20. Eat Foods Rich in Antioxidants

            Antioxidants fight against the harmful effects of free-radicals, toxins which can cause cell damage and an increased risk of disease when they accumulate in the body. Berries, green tea and broccoli are three excellent sources of antioxidants.

            Find out more antiosidants-rich foods here: 13 Delicious Antioxidant Foods That Are Great for Your Health

            21. Have Sex

            Getting down and dirty two to three times a week can have significant health benefits. Sex burns calories, decreases stress, improves sleep, and may even protect against heart disease.[16] It’s an easy and effective way to get exercise–so love long and prosper!

            More Health Tips

            Featured photo credit: Sweethearts/Patrick via flickr.com

            Reference

            [1] Wiley Online Library: Late‐Life Alcohol Consumption and 20‐Year Mortality
            [2] BMJ Journals: Television viewing time and reduced life expectancy: a life table analysis
            [3] Arch Intern Med.: Red Meat Consumption and Mortality
            [4] PLOS Medicine: Social Relationships and Mortality Risk: A Meta-analytic Review
            [5] JAMA: Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in Women
            [6] NCBI: Effects of Omega‐3 Fatty Acids on Cognitive Function with Aging, Dementia, and Neurological Diseases: Summary
            [7] Mayo Clinic Proc: Prediction of all-cause mortality by the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory Optimism-Pessimism Scale scores: study of a college sample during a 40-year follow-up period.
            [8] Med Hypotheses.: Pet ownership protects against the risks and consequences of coronary heart disease.
            [9] The New England Journal of Medicine: Association of Coffee Drinking with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality
            [10] American Journal of Hypertension: Blood Pressure Response to Transcendental Meditation: A Meta-analysis
            [11] Science Direct: Intensive meditation training, immune cell telomerase activity, and psychological mediators
            [12] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
            [13] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
            [14] African Journal of Biotechnology: Anti-cancer effect of polysaccharides isolated from higher basidiomycetes mushrooms
            [15] Science Direct: Periodontal disease, tooth loss, and cancer risk in male health professionals: a prospective cohort study
            [16] AHA Journals: Sexual Activity and Cardiovascular Disease

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