10 Foods to Avoid if You Suffer From Vertigo

Even the most routine everyday tasks might be disturbed by vertigo because of its dizzying spinning and unsteady footing. 

You might be amazed to discover that your very own kitchen has all you need to get relief from this disorienting condition. 

Understanding the connection between nutrition and vertigo will help you make wise decisions to reduce symptoms and recover equilibrium.

What’s the connection between diet and vertigo?

Dietary habits, among other things, can affect vertigo, characterized by a spinning or off-balance sensation [1]. The frequency and intensity of vertigo episodes can greatly influence our foods. 

To properly manage this illness, it is essential to understand the connection between nutrition and vertigo.

A few foods might cause vertigo symptoms to appear or worsen in vulnerable people. Certain frequent dietary offenders are known to cause vertigo, albeit these triggers might differ from person to person. 

Vertigo sufferers may lessen the frequency and severity of their symptoms by recognizing and avoiding certain trigger foods.

Meals that influence blood pressure, fluid balance or inner ear function may unintentionally cause vertigo.

Maintaining a balanced diet that promotes general wellness and reduces any possible disturbances to the vestibular system is essential for maintaining balance.

10 Foods to avoid if you have vertigo

Making deliberate food choices is a common part of living with vertigo. 

While individual triggers may differ, several food groups are frequently linked to the onset or exacerbation of vertigo symptoms [2]. 

You may lessen the impact of vertigo on your everyday life by being aware of these food categories and making wise decisions. 

These foods should be avoided:

1. High-sodium foods

When the body’s sodium levels are high, it retains water to dilute the sodium concentration, which results in fluid retention. 

Blood volume and pressure may increase, impacting circulation and balance in general. 

As the inner ear, which regulates balance and spatial orientation, is particularly sensitive to changes in fluid levels, vertigo sufferers may have symptoms due to this disruption in fluid equilibrium [3].

High sodium consumption can lead to excessive fluid retention, leading to an imbalance within the delicate structures of the inner ear, perhaps increasing pressure or causing disruptions in the fluid-filled canals. 

The signals transmitted to the brain may be interfered with by these disruptions, causing vertigo symptoms like dizziness, spinning feelings and loss of balance.

2. Caffeine and stimulants

While it might temporarily enhance energy, coffee may also worsen vertigo symptoms. 

The neurological system is stimulated by caffeine, which raises blood pressure and heart rate, which can cause or worsen imbalance and dizziness [4]. 

Energy drinks, coffee and other stimulant-rich beverage consumption may cause a rise in blood pressure, heart rate and alertness, which might exacerbate vertigo symptoms.

It is advised to minimize or limit coffee and stimulant-containing items for those who experience vertigo. 

While full abstinence may not always be necessary, cutting back on intake might help with vertigo symptoms. 

Decaffeinated drinks, herbal teas or caffeine-free alternatives might be a good option for people who want to enjoy their favorite drinks without worrying about their balance or feeling lightheaded.

3. Processed foods and additives

Many processed foods have chemicals, including monosodium glutamate (MSG), artificial sweeteners, artificial colors, and taste enhancers.

MSG, frequently included in processed foods, soups, and spice mixes, has been linked to migraines and may worsen some vertigo symptoms.

Artificial sweeteners like aspartame, sucralose and saccharin, frequently used in sugar-free goods, may have neurotoxic effects and aggravate vertigo symptoms in vulnerable people.

Individuals with vertigo may lower their risk of inducing or aggravating vertigo symptoms by limiting their intake of processed meals and being aware of additives [5].

A healthier and more vertigo-friendly eating strategy may be achieved by selecting whole, fresh foods and making meals from scratch with natural components.

4. Trigger foods for migraines

There is enough evidence that the symptoms of vertigo and migraines may coexist, and specific foods can bring on both conditions.

Histamine, a chemical involved in the body’s immunological response, has been shown to cause migraines in certain people.

Aged cheeses, cured meats, fermented meals, pickled foods and several kinds of seafood are high in histamine.

Limiting your intake of these foods may help lower your chance of headaches and ease vertigo symptoms.

5. Alcohol

The vestibular system, responsible for maintaining balance and spatial orientation, can be affected by alcohol.

Alcohol’s central nervous system-slowing effects might affect the inner ear’s ability to communicate with the brain and operate properly, which can cause vertigo symptoms.

As a diuretic, alcohol promotes bodily fluid loss by increasing urine output. Dehydration may cause disruptions and vertigo symptoms by changing the fluid balance in the inner ear.

It is best to drink in moderation or refrain from drinking altogether to reduce how much alcohol affects vertigo symptoms. 

If you prefer to drink, it is advised that you do it moderately and pay attention to your tolerance levels.

6. Spicy foods

Consuming spicy foods, like chili peppers or hot sauces, might cause blood vessels to widen and the circulation of blood to improve.

The blood flow to the inner ear, which is essential for preserving equilibrium and balance, may be impacted by this dilatation.

Capsaicin and other spicy ingredients can activate the neurons that convey pain and heat feelings.

This nerve stimulation may impact the vestibular system, which might cause vertigo, lightheadedness or a spinning feeling.

7. Dairy products

Several dairy products have greater quantities of tyramine and histamine, especially aged and fermented types. 

These substances have been linked to the onset of migraines and may have an impact on vertigo symptoms in those who are vulnerable. 

Dairy products having increased amounts of tyramine and histamine include aged cheeses, yogurt and some cultured dairy products.

Many people with vertigo also struggle with lactose intolerance, which means their systems have difficulty breaking down lactose, the sugar in milk and other dairy products. 

Dairy consumption can cause gastrointestinal distress like constipation, bloating, gas and diarrhea. These digestive issues may indirectly impact the vestibular system, exacerbating vertigo symptoms.

8. Tyramine-rich foods

By encouraging the release of norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter that constricts blood vessels, tyramine is known to alter blood pressure.

Tyramine-rich meals can produce abrupt variations in blood pressure in vulnerable people, which can upset the delicate balance in the inner ear and result in vertigo symptoms [6].

Tyramine sensitivity varies from person to person, and it’s crucial to remember that not everyone who experiences vertigo will be susceptible to it.

Keeping a food journal and tracking one’s responses to meals high in tyramine might assist in identifying specific triggers and reveal if tyramine contributes to the exacerbation of vertigo symptoms.

9. Fats and fried foods

Diets high in fat, particularly those containing unhealthful saturated and trans fats, might hasten the onset of cardiovascular problems.

These fats have the ability to raise cholesterol levels, restrict blood vessels, and even impair adequate blood flow to the inner ear, which is essential for preserving equilibrium and balance.

Inflammation in the body can be brought on by unhealthy fats like trans fats and omega-6 fatty acids in fried and processed meals.

Chronic inflammation can impact the tissues, blood vessels, and nerves, contributing to vertigo symptoms and general balance problems.

Acid reflux, indigestion and bloating are gastrointestinal problems from eating fried meals high in harmful fats.

These gastrointestinal problems may indirectly affect the vestibular system and exacerbate vertigo symptoms.

10. Salicylate-containing foods

Numerous fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices contain salicylates. They work as organic plant compounds for several purposes, including warding off pests.

Salicylates may cause sensitivities or intolerances in some people, and eating foods rich in salicylates may cause vertigo or worsen it [7].

Berries, citrus fruits, tomatoes, peppers, grapes, cherries and some herbs and spices, including curry powder, paprika and cinnamon, are higher in salicylates.

It’s vital to remember that everyone reacts differently to salicylates. Some people might be able to tolerate a certain level of salicylates without suffering any negative effects.


You can take proactive measures to manage your vertigo symptoms by avoiding high-sodium foods, moderating caffeine and stimulant intake, minimizing processed foods and additives, being aware of foods that cause migraines and making deliberate decisions about alcohol, spicy foods, dairy products and fats.

Dietary changes must be tailored to you, and qualified dietitians or healthcare specialists should be consulted for advice. You can improve your general quality of life and recover control over your equilibrium by using a balanced and vertigo-friendly diet.


Is milk good for vertigo?

Depending on the person, milk may have varying effects on vertigo symptoms. While some vertigo sufferers may be able to consume milk without experiencing any negative side effects, others may find that lactose intolerance or possible allergies make their symptoms worse. 

Can you eat eggs with vertigo?

Eating eggs typically has no substantial effect on the vertigo symptoms of those who suffer from it. Eggs are a nutrient-dense item that offers vital nutrients and may be included in a balanced diet for people who experience vertigo.

Can drinking lots of water prevent vertigo?

Water consumption can improve general health and good hydration but may not immediately prevent or treat vertigo. Drinking enough water is crucial for general health and can help create a healthy internal environment, which may help control vertigo indirectly.

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4593901/
[2] https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/21769-vertigo
[3] https://www.alabangchiropractor.com/3-types-food-avoid-if-get-vertigo/
[4] https://vertigodetective.com/the-caffeine-and-vertigo-link/
[5] https://www.thetowntalk.com/story/life/2016/01/17/cutting-msg-salt-may-help-vertigo/78931652/
[6] https://blog.healthians.com/vertigo-diet-foods-to-avoid-and-include-for-effective-vertigo-management/
[7] https://www.fedup.com.au/news/blog/vertigo-and-salicylates

Photograph: nosovaolha/Envato

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