Should You Be Eating Certain Foods For Spine Health?

Eating certain foods for spine health is a good way to get and keep your spine at peak condition.

From an early age, we’ve all been told to eat our fruits and vegetables and that calcium is good for the bones, and for good reason. Eating foods that are rich in nutrients, lean protein, calcium, and vitamins D and K can help alleviate discomfort due to inflammation and boost your overall immune system. Alleviating inflammation can be especially important for spine and joint health, as the health of your spinal cord directly impacts the functionality of the muscles, nerves, and bones throughout your body. When you experience pain, you are likely feeling the effects of inflammation near and around your bones and joints. However, while there are many healthy food choices, there are also some to avoid or enjoy in moderation.

Below, we list some of the best foods for spine health as well as foods to avoid or limit to relieve and prevent inflammation and discomfort.

Best Foods for Spine Health

If you are experiencing neck or back pain, you most likely have a type of inflammation called neuritis—inflamed peripheral nerves. These nerves are found outside of your brain and spinal cord, and they carry signals to and from your brain. When they are inflamed, they can malfunction and increase your discomfort and pain level. However, if you reduce inflammation, your body is more open to healing. Interestingly, your diet can play a vital role in this healing process and your overall health. Below, we list certain foods for spine health that help minimize inflammation and improve your overall bone, nerve, and muscular strength.

  • Plant-based proteins (like lentils and beans)
  • Green leafy vegetables (like spinach, kale, and collard greens)
  • Fatty fish (lean protein like salmon, tuna, and sardines)
  • Dairy products, which are high in calcium—the higher, the better
  • Fruits (like strawberries, blueberries, and oranges)
  • Tomatoes and nuts (like almonds and walnuts)
  • Vitamin K2 supplements, which help strengthen bones in the spine and throughout the body
  • Vitamin D3 supplements help the body absorb calcium, which is crucial for the development of strong bones and the healing of injured ones
  • Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids (like mackerel fish, flaxseed, and soybeans)

Whether you are vegetarian, vegan, or a meat-lover, your diet directly impacts bone health and bone growth. Creating a diet that is rich in calcium, high in omega-3 fatty acids, and incorporates a healthy balance of lean and fatty proteins is key to a solid body foundation. Ensuring that the above foods for spine health are a regular part of your meal plan will not only reduce inflammation but strengthen the muscles and nerves supporting your spine—the core of your body’s structure.

Foods to Avoid for Optimal Spine Health

Just as there are foods for optimal spine health, there are also foods, such as processed carbohydrates, to avoid to prevent inflammation.

Just as there are recommended foods for spine health, there are also foods that can be detrimental and can add to inflammatory issues. Below are just a few to either avoid or consume in moderation:

  • Processed carbohydrates (like breakfast cereal, chips, and white bread)
  • Fruit juices (especially those high in sugar)
  • Fried foods (like chicken, french fries, etc.)
  • High-grain foods (like pasta and popcorn)
  • Red meat (like burgers and steaks)
  • Processed meats (like hot dogs and sausage)
  • Foods cooked with refined vegetable oils, such as soybean oil, vegetable oil, and corn oil, as they contain a high level of omega-6 fatty acids, which can contribute to inflammation

Consuming the above foods regularly can contribute to weight gain and increased inflammation throughout the body. In addition, any spinal misalignments you may have can make digesting these fatty and sugary foods and drinks more difficult.

Chiropractic BioPhysics® and a Healthy Diet: A Winning Combination

Spines depend on many things to stay healthy. While a diet consisting of protein and calcium-rich foods for spine health is important, so is making sure your spine is in alignment, as a misaligned spine can cause joint pain and inflammation that only exacerbates underlying issues. Inflammation attacks the joints in your spine and can eventually lead to pain in other areas of the body as well. If not addressed, inflammation can trigger your immune system to attack healthy tissue and organs in your body.

Chiropractic providers who specialize in Chiropractic BioPhysics® (CBP), like the experienced team at PostureWorks, can provide you with an in-depth assessment of your body’s structure and can create a comprehensive and customized treatment plan based on the results. Implementing a thorough chiropractic care plan that combines exercise, chiropractic treatment, spinal alignment, and an anti-inflammatory diet can make all the difference in combating and preventing back and joint pain.Chiropractic BioPhysics®, or CBP, is a deeply researched and results-oriented corrective care technique that aims to realign the spine back to health and optimal function. CBP is a conservative, evidence-based, and non-invasive way to minimize and/or eliminate back and neck pain. To learn more about foods for spine health or to schedule your appointment with the experienced team at PostureWorks, contact us today.

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