5 Nutritious Foods For A Healthy Spine

By Riddhi Parmar +2 more

We all experience spinal pain at some point or another in a lifetime. It is a common but unavoidable problem. When the pain is mild and occasional, we can neglect it; but when the pain is severe to moderate and it continuous, we can’t just avoid it.  

There are many treatments available for spinal pain, but exercise and a healthy diet are the ultimate solutions. You may surprise how these techniques can keep you away from medicines. But remember, a balanced lifestyle is always better than eating unnecessary medicines.

Even though you are not experiencing any pain, performing some exercises and maintaining a healthy lifestyle can help you to improve spinal health, and reduce or prevent back pain.  

Tips for a healthy spine  

  1. Stay active
  2. Stay hydrated
  3. Eat healthy food
  4. Engage your mind
  5. Maintain a healthy weight
  6. Remember your posture  
  7. Sleep properly  
  8. Quit smoking

Here are a few exercises you can do every day to maintain good spinal health:

1: Strengthening exercise  

Strengthening exercise helps to increase muscle tone, especially the abdominal and back muscles. It will help to stabilise the spine and make it easier to maintain the correct posture and perform daily activities. There are various types of strengthening exercises, but it is always better to start with a simple one.  

For lower back strength –

  • Pelvic tilt – Lie on your back with your knees bent. Tighten your abdominal muscles and press your lower back towards the floor. Then pull your navel towards the floor and hold for 3-5 seconds, and relax. Repeat this 10-20 times.  
  • Leg lift – Lie on your back and lift one leg towards your nose and stabilise the pelvis. Hold this position for 3-5 seconds, then slowly release that leg. Do one leg at a time and repeat 10-20 times.  

For upper body stability and strengthening –

  • Shoulder shrugs – Stand on the floor and raise your hands straight up to the ears. Then press your shoulders downwards as far as possible and hold for 3-5 seconds. Do 10-20 repetitions.  

2: Stretching exercises

  • Stretching exercises can help to increase the flexibility of muscles so you can move your limbs in full swing. Stretching prevents excess muscle stretch and makes your body stronger. Stretching exercises you can do before and after vigorous activities –  
  • Hamstring stretch  – Lie on your back and bend your left leg slightly. Keep your toes relax and raise your right leg straight up as far as you can. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat this process with another leg.
  • Lower back stretch  – Lie on your back and gently press the hips towards the ground. Then raise your right leg and pull your knee towards the chest. Hold this position for 10 seconds and switch the leg.  

3: Aerobic exercises

Aerobic exercises help to strengthen your heart and lung muscles, increase energy, improve sleep. simple brisk walking, jogging, biking, skating can help you to keep your spine healthy. You can also try yoga and pilates for great benefits.  

Also, a healthy spine needs healthy food to maintain its posture and strength. We may know what are healthy food items for our body, but do you know what kind of food makes your spine strong? So, here is the list of food items that help your spine –

1: Green leafy vegetables  

Vegetables are healthy, but green leafy vegetables are rich in various vitamins, magnesium, iron, and calcium. These nutrients are beneficial for bone growth and neurological health. They are also rich in antioxidants that can boost your immunity and are ideal for patients who are recovering from a spinal injury. Spinach, kale, and broccoli can keep the spine and tissues healthy.  

2: Fruits  

Fruits that are bright & dark in colour are excellent sources of nutrition. Fruits like blackberries, strawberries, and blueberries are excellent sources of vitamin C and antioxidants that protect tissues and removes toxins from your body. It also helps to prevent spinal and central nervous system damage.  

3: Dairy products  

Dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yoghurt are a rich source of calcium and vitamin D to build and maintain healthy bones and prevents nerve injuries. A glass of milk every day can provide you with the required amount of calcium to keep your bones healthy and also reduce the symptoms of osteoporosis.  

4: Nuts and seeds  

Nuts like almonds and walnuts are full of fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, and vitamins. They fight against inflammations and promote bone health. Seeds such as flax seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids that help to fight inflammation and injury.  

5: Avocado

We have enlisted avocado separately because it works great for spinal health. Avocado contains fatty acids, fibres, and potassium that boost your overall health. Considering it as an anti-inflammatory fruit, it helps to relieve back pain, and potassium helps to reduce the swelling.  

6: Protein-rich Plants

The protein you get from plants is great for a healthy spine. These tend to be better than the ones found in meat as it may lead to inflammation. Foods like chia seeds, lentils and beans not only provide a good amount of protein, but also deliver much-needed nutrients. These include a variety of antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and more!

7: Salmon

If seafood is something that tickles your fancy, be sure to add salmon to your diet as often as possible. The fish is a very good source of lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids. The latter helps in improving bone and tissue health and help combat inflammation.   An additional bonus is that salmon is delicious and can be prepared in numerous ways. So, next time you are thinking of your spinal health, have a serving of salmon!  

Spinal health is utmost important in day-to-day activities, so maintaining its health by these simple exercises and dietary hacks can help you in the long-run.

Disclaimer:  The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a health care professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.

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