Diabetes is on the rise – 28 million Americans have the disease, and half will develop neuropathy. (APMA)
Neuropathy is nerve damage that causes lack of feeling in the extremities. This loss of sensation can be very damaging for the feet, where a small wound or puncture may go unnoticed until it develops into an ulcer.
There are many ways to prevent or slow the onset of diabetes and neuropathy:
- If you have diabetes, managing your disease with doctor’s care and medication is essential.
- Choose your footwear carefully so that it is both supportive and protective.
- Eat properly and exercise as recommended by your physician.
- If you smoke, try to stop.
Another way to benefit your nerves is to eat a healthy diet. Eating right can not only reduce the risk of nerve damage, but can even restore lost nerve function and prevent more damage!
A Healthy Diet Can Help Your Nerves
Stavros O. Alexopoulos, DPM recommends bolstering your diet with nerve-nourishing nutrients such as
- B complex vitamins (B1, B6, B12) to help nerve cell communication
- Vitamins C and E: “anti-aging” for the nervous system
- Essential minerals like magnesium and copper to help produce neurotransmitters
Antioxidants can help slow the aging process for nerve tissue. Healthy fatty acids (omega 3’s) can restore nerve-protected myelin sheaths. Myelin helps the nerve signals travel along the nerve itself.
Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables especially leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale. Build whole grains with powerful antioxidants into your diet along with healthy fish containing fatty acids and low-fat meats and dairy products.
Pass on These for Nerve Health
- Avoid added sugars, refined grains and saturated fats.
- Some patients are helped by reducing gluten intake from grains like wheat, barley and rye.
- Try to limit alcohol as excessive alcohol can worsen neuropathy symptoms.
Fight neuropathy by eating right – your nerves will thank you!
Visit Us with Any Neuropathy Concerns
Dr. Alexopoulos, board certified podiatrist has extensive experience with patients with all kinds of foot and ankle diseases and conditions. You can reach us at our Chicago office at (773) 561-8100 or request an appointment via the website. Don’t let poor footwear or any type of foot problem ruin your child’s summer – call us today!