Nerve pain is one of the most frequently encountered medical conditions out there. Although it can come in many forms and it can be related to a lot of causes, you should know that what you eat can influence the way you will feel about your nerve pain. If you want to have a better understanding of how this is possible, then read on
Understanding Nerve Pain
Nerve Pain (neuropathy of peripheral neuropathy) is usually caused by the damage that was brought to the nerves in the peripheral nervous system. Since the brain and the spinal cord stay out of the involvement when it comes to this type of pain, neuropathy is not believed to affect the central nervous system.
However, that does not mean that it is not a very complex underlying condition for many medical issues out there. As a matter of fact, there is a very wide range of syndromes and diseases out there that may be characterized by nerve pain at different stages of their evolution.
There are three main types of nerves that can be affected by neuropathy: autonomic nerves, motor nerves and sensory nerves. Furthermore, the causes for which nerve pain can appear can range from physical trauma and repetitive movements to infections and the effects of certain toxins and drugs can have on the human body.
Among all the medical conditions with which neuropathy is associated, Diabetes plays a very important place. In this case, the nerve pain is caused by the fact that the high levels of glucose in blood can affect the walls of the blood vessels that supply the nerves, which in itself leads to pain.
Other medical conditions frequently associated with neuropathy include HIV/AIDS, chronic kidney or liver disease, diphtheria, Lyme disease, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease (which affects the lower limbs) and alcoholism.
As mentioned before, certain drugs can lead to neuropathy as well. These medications include some of those used in treating arrhythmias, some antibiotics, some cancer-related drugs, some drugs that are used in treating bipolar disorder, some that are used in treating epilepsy and some that are usually used with the purpose of lowering the blood pressure.
The very first signs of neuropathy should be a red flag for you and if you experience them, it is important that you visit a doctor as soon as possible. These first symptoms include numbness in the feet/hands, tingling, excessive sensitivity, very sharp pain, issues in coordination and changes to the nails and to the hair. Furthermore, muscle weakness can appear as well and so can bladder and bowel issues, heat intolerance and dizziness.
A Healthy Diet for Neuropathy Patients
Eating right can change a lot of things in your life, from the way your body functions to the way you feel and from the way you look to the way your brain functions. Thus, it will most definitely help you with your nerve pain as well.
The key to living a healthy life by eating right is finding the perfect balance between the foods that are good for you and the dishes you like. Although this may sound surprising for some of you out there, the truth is that healthy food should be far from being tasteless, but on the contrary: it should be absolutely delicious when eaten right.
One of the types of foods you will have to include in your diet is that group of products that usually contain a lot of vitamin C. Thus, citrus fruits (grapefruit, lime, oranges, etc.), cranberries, broccoli, strawberry, cauliflower and tomatoes will have to become part of your diet if they aren’t already.
Furthermore, make sure that you are not allergic to wheat or that you are not gluten sensitive, since this medical condition can cause peripheral neuropathy. If you need to, talk to your doctor about this and let yourself be examined for it. If you are not allergic to any of these ingredients contained by whole grains, then using them moderately in your diet may be beneficial.
Fatty fish and red/white meat are also something you will have to bring into your meals. All of these products are extremely reach in proteins, anti-oxidants in Omega-3 fatty acids, which are healthy for a large number of reasons.
Vitamin B12 deficiency can also lead to nerve pain, so do make sure that you get your daily intake of this vitamin. You will find it in meat (including those types of meat mentioned above), poultry, low-fat dairy products and in eggs as well.