Suffering from Back Pain? Time to check your Diet

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Key Highlights

  1. Can an improper Diet lead to Back Pain?
  2. How watching what you eat can help you in treatment of Back pain
  3. Give your back the right fuel to keep it strong and painfree

Diet plays an important role in controlling blood sugar levels, high blood pressure, endocrine problems (thyroid, obesity). Nowadays due to the changes in lifestyle, bad posture, working for a long hours on computers, wrong eating habits along with lack of exercises leads to back pain problems. Along with medicines, physiotherapy exercises diet also plays an important role to cure back pain problems. Your bones, muscles need good supply of nutrients to stay strong enough to support your body.

Let’s see which nutrients are important for back support-

1. Calcium :

calcium plays an important role to keep good health of bones. Many times poor calcium intake can cause osteoporosis (softening of bones) earlier. ICMR 2020 suggests, Indian men and women should consume 800 mg calcium per day.

What are the good sources of calcium?

1 ragi roti gives 187 mg calcium, 100 ml gives 267 mg calcium, 1 Medium size bowl cheese are having 700-800 mg calcium, 1 medium size bowl paneer and tofu gives 400-500 mg calcium.

These are the calcium rich sources. We should be very careful while consuming high calcium sources because whole grains are having bran (outer part of grain) which is high in phytic acid and other minerals which can become barrier to absorb calcium in intestine. High sodium rich food like salty food, green leafy vegetable can interfere calcium absorption. Coffee, chocolate consumption along with calcium sources, smoking can also interfere calcium absorption.

2. Magnesium :

good sources of magnesium along with calcium supports bone health. According to ICMR 2020, daily requirement of magnesium for men is 320 mg/day and for women is 270 mg/day.

1 phulka gives 50 mg magnesium, 1 TB sunflower seeds gives 62 mg magnesium, 1 TB flax seeds are having 59 mg magnesium, 1 medium bowl cashew nuts and almonds gives around 310-350 mg magnesium. Apart from these soy flour, plain oats, buckwheat, cowpeas, moth beans are also rich in magnesium.

3. Vitamin D3 :

vitamin D3 helps calcium to absorb in body to keep health of bones. Nowadays, vitamin D deficiency is common. The natural best sources are sunlight, fatty fish (salmon), liver and egg yolk. Some foods fortified with Vitamin D also helps. Severe deficiency may require Vitamin D supplementation.

4. Vitamin C :

it is important for collagen formation. It holds the body together which is found in bones, muscles and skin. According to ICMR 2020, daily requirement of vitamin C for men is 65 mg/day and for women it is 55 mg/day.

100 g amlagives 600 mg vitamin C, 1 guava is having 228 mg vitamin C apart from these capsicum, tomato, papaya, raw and ripe mango, kiwi, oranges, lemon, sweet limes, strawberries , blueberries, raspberries, cherries are also rich in vitamin C.

5. Proteins :

with the help of other nutrients proteins plays an important role in maintaining, healing and repairing of bones, cartilage and soft tissues. It is also important in immunity system. Every person should eat 50-60 g protein per day.

1 egg gives around 6.5 g protein, 100 g chicken is having 25 g protein, apart from these dal, sprouts, milk, soy, skimmed milk powder, paneer, tofu are rich in protein.

  • Anti-inflammatory foods -
  • Many research showing, anti-inflammatory diet with foods help to maintain good spine health. Flax seeds and chia seeds are best to avoid inflammation when you can eat in combination with omega-3 rich sources like salmon, mackerel, sardine type of fish. Beet root, tomato, sweet potato, cherries, berries, grapes, pomegranate, watermelon and spices like basil, cinnamon, ginger, garlic, onion, turmeric are having anti-inflammatory agent which helps to keep your spine health.

  • Avoid these foods -
  • Weight management is very important. Overweight and obesity can lead to back pain problem to increase. Processed food, ready to eat food, white bread, maida, pasta, rice, sugary drinks, fried foods, hydrogenated food, preservatives added in food, chips, pastries, alcohol are more prone to increase your weight as well as increase inflammation factors which leads to breakdown of the rubbery cushion (disc) between each bone (vertebrae) in the spine. Research shows these type of food can increase the chances of type 2 diabetes which then cause changes in the spine leading to back pain problems.

    Top spine surgeon in Pune | Top spine doctor in Pune

    Ms Gayatri Kulkarni
    Registered Dietitian
    Diabetic Educator

    Ms Gayatri Kulkarni has been practicing in the field of nutrition for more than 8 years and is closely associated with Pune Spine Institute. She has helped numerous patients achieve their health goals and well being through her custom made diet plans.