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Can Nutritional Intervention for Obesity and Comorbidities Slow Down Age-Related Hearing Impairment?

Tang, Ting-Hsuan, Hwang, Juen-Haur, Yang, Ting-Hua, Hsu, Chuan-Jen, Wu, Chen-Chi, Liu, Tien-Chen
Nutrients 2019 v.11 no.7
Panax, aldosterone, apoptosis, comorbidity, databases, ears, elderly, glycemic effect, hearing, hearing disorders, high fat diet, hyperlipidemia, inflammation, lecithins, lipid composition, lipoic acid, low fat diet, mitochondria, mitochondrial DNA, nutritional intervention, obesity, omega-3 fatty acids, oxidative stress, protective effect, tea
Background: Age-related hearing impairment (ARHI), the most common sensory deficit in the elderly, is associated with enormous social and public health burdens. Emerging evidence has suggested that obesity and comorbidities might increase the risk of ARHI. However, no reviews have been published that address the role of nutritional interventions for obesity and comorbidities in the prevention of ARHI. Methods: A PubMed database search was conducted to identify the relationship between obesity and ARHI. “Obesity”, “metabolic syndrome”, “adipose-derived hormone”, “fatty acid”, and “age-related hearing impairment” were included as keywords. Results: A total of 89 articles was analyzed with 39 articles of relevance to ARHI. A high-fat diet may induce oxidative stress, mitochondrial damage, and apoptosis in the inner ear. Statins have been shown to delay the progression of ARHI by improving the lipid profile, reducing oxidative stress, and inhibiting endothelial inflammation. Aldosterone could exert protective effects against ARHI by upregulating the Na-K-2Cl co-transporter 1 in the cochlea. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids could preserve the cochlear microcirculation by reducing dyslipidemia and inhibiting inflammation. Alpha-lipoic acid and lecithin might delay the progression of ARHI by protecting cochlear mitochondrial DNA from damage due to oxidative stress. Tea and ginseng might protect against ARHI through their anti-obesity and anti-diabetic effects. Conclusions: Nutritional interventions for obesity and comorbidities, including a low-fat diet, supplementation with statins, aldosterone, omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, alpha-lipoic acids, lecithin, tea, and ginseng, may protect against the development of ARHI.