Peripheral neuropathy refers to the damage to the nerves outside of the brain and spinal cord (peripheral nerves), causing pain, numbness, and weakness in the extremities. It has various potential causes, the most common of which is diabetes. Other factors that can cause contribute to nerve damage include injury, autoimmune disorders, infections, chemotherapy, vitamin deficiencies, and exposure to toxins.
Although there’s no way you can totally prevent neuropathy and its symptoms, there are things you can do to reduce your risk of developing the condition itself. Consider these tips.
Tip #1 Make Healthy Food Choices.
The food choices you make have a profound effect on the function of your nerves. To help ensure your nerves are in tip-top condition, make sure to incorporate a combination of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein, eggs, and low-fat dairy foods into your diet.
B vitamins, vitamin E, and niacin are essential for nerve health, so ensuring you get the recommended daily allowance (RDA) for these nutrients can help you lower your risk of developing nerve problems. Loading up on fortified cereals, which contain added vitamins and minerals, can be a great way to increase your intake of B vitamins.
Tip #2 Exercise Regularly.
Regular exercise is also important for your nerve health. Try to get at least thirty minutes to one hour of exercise at least three times a week, and always check with your doctor if you are starting a new exercise regimen.
Tip #3 Don’t Smoke and Avoid Excessive Alcohol Intake.
Smoking and excessive alcohol use can lead to poor nerve health—a compelling reason to ditch these habits:
- Nicotine restricts blood flow to your nerve cells, preventing them from functioning correctly.
- Alcohol renders your body unable to properly absorb nutrients, including B vitamins and protein. With less of these nutrients to go around, your body needs to prioritize where they go. This leads to nutritional deficiency in the nerves far from your heart.
Tip #4 Manage Preexisting Medical Conditions.
If you have a chronic medical condition that can increase your risk for nerve damage, work with your doctor to devise a treatment strategy to help you effectively manage your condition. For example, if you have diabetes, you need to keep your blood sugar levels controlled by taking your medications as directed, eating right, and engaging in regular physical activity.
Neuropathy Therapy Program at NIVA Health
At NIVA Health, we offer Neuropathy Program, through which our highly qualified physicians administer electrotherapy—helping patients live well with or even conquer their neuropathy pain without reliance on medications.
Learn more about our Neuropathy Program by calling us at (866) 377-5872 or filling out this form to schedule a free consultation with one of our providers. We have eight office locations for your convenience. We look forward to serving you!