New research has found that women who eat two or more servings of fish a week have a decreased risk of developing hearing loss.
Published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the study analyzed roughly two decades’ worth of data from the Nurses’ Health Study II. Throughout the study, 65,215 women reported on their diet as well as on their general health, including their hearing. In reviewing the data, researchers found that regardless of what type of fish the women recorded eating, such as salmon, tuna, halibut, etc., there was a strong correlation between higher consumption and less hearing loss.
Dr. Sharon Curhan of Brigham and Women’s Hospital at Harvard Medical School suspects the link may be due to the long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) found in fish; they support blood flow to the cochlea, the structure within the inner ear that aids in the auditory process.
It is currently unknown if the correlation is also true for men, but previous research has already determined that eating fish contributes to many health benefits for all, including helping to lower one’s risk of heart disease.
Currently, as many as one-third of American women in their 50s experience some type of hearing difficulty, but recent research shows that only 40.1% of women who could benefit from utilizing hearing solutions actually use them. Untreated hearing loss has been linked with higher rates of depression in women as well as to accelerated brain tissue loss.
Last updated: October 28, 2014