Degenerative Disc Disease | Diet

Degenerative Disc Disease and Diet

An unfortunate side effect of growing older is that our spinal anatomy naturally begins to deteriorate. Years of wear and tear on the spinal components take their toll, and conditions like degenerative disc disease can develop over time. While the aging process is obviously unavoidable, there are certainly steps that can be taken to increase overall spine health and potentially slow the deterioration process down. One of the most practical ways to accomplish this important goal is with a healthy diet.

Spinal deterioration

The spinal column in the neck and back is responsible for supporting much of the body’s weight while also providing the flexibility and mobility we require from our neck and back. In order to function properly, a variety of spinal anatomical components, such as intervertebral discs, vertebral joints, tendons, ligaments, muscles, cartilage and bone must work together. The problem is that excess body fat adds additional strain to these components and exacerbates the deterioration process that normally occurs from regular wear and tear. This is why people who are obese often have neck and back problems.

Here are some helpful tips for losing weight the healthy way:

  • Eat five small meals a day instead of three large ones
  • Watch your portions
  • Eat more vegetables and fewer fats
  • Eat meals that are high in Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Cut out sugary drinks and needless calories
  • Join a gym or stretching class
  • Treat yourself from time to time, but keep your portions manageable
  • Use common sense when you’re dieting

Moving forward with other treatment

Degenerative disc disease can have a real effect on your quality of life, but by maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly and taking care of your body, you can limit your pain and prevent injury. If, despite your best efforts, you continue to experience chronic neck and back pain, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn about our innovative, minimally invasive procedures for treating disc deterioration.