Can Dietary Changes Help Degenerative Disc Disease?

Can Dietary Changes Help Degenerative Disc Disease?

When your back pain has been diagnosed as degenerative disc disease, the prognosis may have you in a tailspin. Although this condition is scary and painful, it can be successfully managed through a number of different treatments. But there are also lifestyle changes you can make — specifically your diet — to help you deal with this diagnosis.

Our team at Pinnacle Health Chiropractic are clinical experts in all kinds of back and neck pain. If you have degenerative disc disease, Dr. Jason Ablett is just who you need to see. Dr. Ablett is an expert chiropractor who has both the knowledge and skills to help you fight your degenerative disc disease.

Understanding degenerative disc disease 

Your spinal column is a very complex part of your body. It allows you to move while also providing you stability and shape. Because your spine is so vital to your overall health, it also takes on a lot of wear and tear. 

In between the vertebrae, or the bones, in your spine are soft and spongy discs that help give you support and cushion in your back. These discs help to absorb the shock and pressure in your spine, which puts them at a higher risk for injury and degeneration.

Degenerative disc disease is when your intervertebral discs deteriorate over time, leading to pain and decreased movement in your spine. While this condition happens naturally as you get older, it may strike you earlier than others due to genetics and other factors. This condition also makes it more likely that you’ll develop other problems in your spine, such as:

But degenerative disc disease doesn’t always lead to pain. Sometimes, you may not even know you have any deterioration of your discs until it’s severe. But if you do have pain, it may be intermittent, and can travel down into your buttocks and low back.

Because this condition is sometimes elusive, it’s important to understand your risk so you can get ahead of the problem before it starts.

What puts you at risk?

Degenerative disc disease is a condition that forms over time, and often affects older people. Just like its name, it’s a degenerative condition, meaning it doesn’t happen overnight. While age is definitely a risk factor, there are other reasons that you might end up with this condition, some of which include:

Your eating habits are another way that you’re putting your spine at risk for degeneration. Processed foods and excessive alcohol both lead to inflammation in your body, including in your spine. 

Inflammation can become chronic, especially when your food choices aren’t the best. However, when you change your diet for the better, it may be able to help your discs to slow the deterioration and cut down on inflammation.

How changing your diet helps

You may not know this, but your diet is actually very important to your spine health. In fact, your intervertebral discs are greatly affected by what you eat and how you stay hydrated. They thrive on both hydration and oxygenation, so a healthy diet is the key to preventing degeneration.

While there are a lot of medical treatments out there for degenerative disc disease, the first place you can start is by modifying your diet. Inflammation is a powerful condition that often leads to pain in your spine, especially when you have degenerative disc disease.

This is where eating foods that help to decrease inflammation can help. Vegetables are a key component to fighting inflammation and back pain from degenerative disc disease. Sweet potatoes, carrots, and beets are all great vegetables to eat for spinal health. Leafy greens and broccoli are also excellent choices to add into your meals.

However, fruits can help as well. Berries and deeply colored fruits are known to fight inflammation, especially in your spine and discs. Cherries and watermelon are also on the list of foods in this category.

Let's not forget about herbs and lean proteins. Many herbs have anti-inflammatory properties, so make sure to add them to your foods. Lean protein aids in rebuilding tissues like your muscles, and can help your back pain significantly.

Calcium is yet another important factor in spine health. This nutrient, along with vitamin D, helps your bones to stay strong and healthy, especially in your spine. Strong bones can help you keep your spine health in check, especially when it comes to your discs.

Don’t continue to suffer from degenerative disc disease alone. If you’re ready to discuss your options, don’t hesitate to call our office today to get the treatment you need, or you can schedule an appointment online using the booking tool on our website.

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