Scientists still aren’t sure why. But they have learned that, just like plants, scoliosis needs certain conditions to take root. Some of these conditions still elude us. But research is increasingly showing that nutrition is one of the factors that can affect whether—and how—the scoliosis gene is expressed.
More than two decades ago, researchers concluded that “poor nutrition may play a role” in idiopathic scoliosis and that “this possibility should be examined further in humans.” Since then, more recent studies have determined that in those who carry the scoliosis genes, specific nutritional imbalances can affect whether a curve develops or progresses.
Although poor nutrition doesn’t cause idiopathic scoliosis (the genetic seed does), progression can be spurred by hormone imbalances, certain mineral deficiencies or an unhealthy diet. This is because of the way the brain and muscles communicate with each other. Below is a look at how scoliosis and nutrition are interwoven.
Neurotransmitters and Scoliosis Progression
The brain sends and receives signals from the muscles via neurotransmitters—chemicals that control the flow of communication between the brain and the body. When a child’s neurotransmitters are deficient, these messages can become delayed, blocked or accelerated.
As a result, the brain doesn’t realize the body’s posture is out of balance, and it fails to correct the problem. This triggers a cascade of changes that can ultimately lead to the progression of scoliosis curves.
Studies have linked certain hormone deficiencies with scoliosis progression. These include:
- Growth hormones
By correcting these hormonal imbalances, we can reopen the pathways of communication between the brain and muscles. It is possible to naturally treat scoliosis, and nutrition plays an important role.
How Nutrition Affects Scoliosis
Neurotransmitters are created from amino acids and certain B vitamins. They’re also metabolized by various enzymes. When our diet doesn’t provide enough of these essential building blocks, production of neurotransmitters suffers.
Fortunately, these imbalances can often be corrected with nutritional supplements and dietary modification. Recommended nutrition for scoliosis includes foods that are rich in certain amino acids or enzymes. Doctors also recommend avoiding foods that cause inflammation or deprive bones and muscles of essential nutrients.
What to eat:
- Fresh fruits
- Fresh vegetables
- Organic meats
Supplements to take:
- Digestive aids
- EPA-DHA Complex
- Vitamin D3
What not to eat:
- White flour
- Soda (both regular and diet)
- All soy products
- Coffee and tea (herbal teas are fine)
- Sugar (consider Stevia instead)
- Salt (unless it’s sea salt in moderate amounts)
- Chocolate (small amounts of dark chocolate are allowed)
- Greasy or fried foods
- Corn syrup
- Packaged lunchmeats
- Artificial sweeteners
- MSG and other additives
Nutritional Support for Scoliosis Treatment
Good nutrition can have a big impact on scoliosis treatment. Successful long-term healing depends on the ability to retrain the brains to correct the body’s posture and reduce spinal curves. When neurotransmitters are restored to their natural levels, patients tend to make more progress.
ScoliSMART’s Nutritional Program was designed to support patients in their healing journey. By testing neurotransmitter levels, identifying specific imbalances and correcting them with the right nutrition for scoliosis, we can enhance the treatments our patients receive.