Man grimacing from ringing in his ear.

There is an inconsistency in symptoms of tinnitus; they seem to appear and disappear, sometimes for no evident reason at all. Perhaps you’re getting into bed one night and, seemingly out of nowhere, your ears start ringing something fierce. No matter how long you lie in bed and consider the reason why you’re hearing this buzzing, you can’t identify any triggers in your day: There is no noticeable reason why, at 9 PM, ringing is happening, no loud music, no loud fire alarms, nothing.

So possibly the food you ate could be the reason. We don’t generally think about the link between hearing and food, but there’s a bit of research and evidence to suggest that some foods can make tinnitus worse. The key for you is knowing what those foods are, so you can stay away from them.

Some Foods Which Trigger Tinnitus

So let’s get right down to it. You would like to recognize which kind of foods you should stay away from so you can make certain you never have to go through one of those food-produced tinnitus episodes again. Certain foods to stay away from may include:


Alcohol and tobacco should be high on the list of items to stay away from. You will definitely want to avoid drinking and smoking so that you can reduce your risk of a tinnitus flare up’s despite the fact that tobacco isn’t actually a food.

Your overall health can be drastically impacted by alcohol and tobacco specifically your blood pressure. Your tinnitus is considerably more likely to flare up the more you drink and smoke.


One of the top predictors of tinnitus episodes is your blood pressure. When your blood pressure rises, your tinnitus worsens. That’s the reason sodium should certainly be on your list of food substances to avoid. You’ll want to substantially decrease your sodium consumption whether you use salt on everything or you just love eating french fries.

There are certain foods that are shockingly high in sodium, too, such as ice cream (which you don’t typically think of as tasting especially salty). You’ll need to keep an eye on sodium levels in everything you eat to prevent a surprise tinnitus event.

Fast Food

It shouldn’t be shocking that you should stay away from fast food if you are avoiding sodium. Even fast food joints that say they are a more healthy option serve food that is really high in fat and sodium. And, clearly, your blood pressure and your tinnitus will be negatively impacted by this type of diet. Let’s not forget the massive drinks they serve which are extremely high in sugar. Yes you guessed it, sugar is next on the list.

Sugars and Sweets

Candy is something that we all enjoy. Well, maybe not everyone, but the majority of us. From time to time, you’ll encounter someone who sincerely prefers broccoli over candy. No judgment here.

Regrettably, sugar can completely throw off the stability of glucose in your body. And a little disruption of your glucose stability can cause you to have a difficult time trying to sleep. And the more you toss and turn, the more you start listening for that ringing and buzzing.


There is an obvious reason why we kept this one for last. This is the one we’re least pleased about needing to eliminate. But your sleep cycle can be significantly affected if you have any caffeine later in the day. And the worse your quality of sleep, the more your tinnitus is likely to flare up.

It’s really the lack of sleep, not the caffeine that’s the problem. Have your coffee or tea in the morning, and switch to a non-caffeinated drink before dinner.

Find out What Works Best For You

This is certainly not an exhaustive list. You’ll want to speak with your hearing expert about any dietary modifications you may need to make. And it’s worth remembering that everybody will be affected differently by dietary adjustments, so it could even be worth keeping a food journal where you can keep track of what affects you and by how much.

Knowing what foods can lead to a tinnitus flare up can help you make smarter decisions going forward. When you begin keeping track of how your ears react to different foods, the cause of your tinnitus could become less incomprehensible.

If you have that last cup of coffee, at least you know what you’re in for.


Call Today to Set Up an Appointment

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.

Call or text us for a no-obligation evaluation.

Schedule Now

Call us today.

Schedule Now