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  • Writer's pictureDr. Nahir

Nourishing the Core: The Role of Nutrition in Supporting Pelvic Floor Health

When it comes to pelvic floor health, we often think about exercises and therapies, but nutrition plays a crucial role as well. We commonly get asked some variation of, “ I’ve been doing my exercises, is there anything else I can do throughout my day to day to help”.

Well there are several daily habits that can help with pelvic floor symptoms and one of them is focusing on your nutrition which can be a big help to making improvements for your pelvic floor wellness. A well-balanced diet can support pelvic floor function by providing essential nutrients that promote muscle strength, tissue integrity, and overall well-being. Keep reading to learn about nutrition and maintaining pelvic floor health and dietary tips to support optimal pelvic floor function.

Now before we dive in deeper, we’re not saying you can’t enjoy a slice of pizza or have your guilty ice cream pleasure. You definitely can, but being able to mix those pleasures with a well balanced diet can be of benefit. We want to provide tips and education on ways to improve and maintain pelvic floor health.

The Connection Between Nutrition and Pelvic Floor Health:

1. Muscle Health: Adequate protein intake is essential for muscle repair and growth, including the muscles of the pelvic floor. Incorporating lean protein sources such as poultry, fish, beans, and tofu into your diet can support pelvic floor muscle strength and function. Meeting protein guidelines is also essential for pregnant and nursing women.

2. Tissue Integrity: Collagen is a protein that provides structure and support to

tissues throughout the body, including the pelvic floor. Consuming collagen-rich

foods such as bone broth, chicken skin, and fish skin, as well as vitamin C-rich

fruits and vegetables, can help support pelvic floor tissue integrity.

3. Hydration: Proper hydration is essential for maintaining bladder and bowel

health. Adequate fluid intake helps prevent urinary tract infections, constipation,

and bladder irritation, which can contribute to pelvic floor dysfunction. Aim to

drink about half your body weight in water throughout the day and limit intake of bladder-irritating beverages such as caffeine and alcohol.

4. Fiber: A diet rich in fiber promotes regular bowel movements and prevents

constipation, which can strain the pelvic floor muscles and contribute to pelvic

floor dysfunction. Include fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains,

beans, and nuts in your daily meals and snacks.

5. Anti-inflammatory Foods: Chronic inflammation can contribute to pelvic pain and discomfort. Consuming anti-inflammatory foods such as fatty fish, nuts, seeds, olive oil, fruits, and vegetables can help reduce inflammation and promote pelvic floor comfort.

6. Bladder-Friendly Foods: Certain foods and beverages can irritate the bladder and exacerbate urinary symptoms. Limiting or avoiding bladder-irritating foods such as spicy foods, citrus fruits, tomatoes, caffeine, and alcohol can help manage

urinary urgency and frequency.

Incorporating Pelvic Floor-Friendly Nutrition into Your Diet:

1. Start your day with a balanced breakfast that includes protein, fiber, and healthy

fats to support energy levels and muscle function.

2. Snack on nutrient-dense foods such as Greek yogurt with berries, hummus with

raw vegetables, or a handful of nuts and seeds.

3. Fill your plate with a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables at each meal to

ensure a wide range of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

4. Choose whole grains such as quinoa, brown rice, and oats over refined grains to

maximize fiber intake and support digestive health.

5. Include lean protein sources such as chicken, fish, tofu, eggs, and legumes in

your meals to support muscle strength and repair.

6. Stay hydrated throughout the day by drinking water, herbal teas, and other

hydrating beverages, and limit intake of bladder-irritating beverages such as

caffeine and alcohol.

7. Experiment with anti-inflammatory ingredients such as turmeric, ginger, garlic,

and green tea in your cooking to add flavor and support pelvic floor comfort.

Nutrition plays a significant role in supporting pelvic floor health and overall well-being.

By incorporating nutrient-rich foods into your diet, and staying hydrated, you can

support pelvic floor muscle strength, tissue integrity, and function. Whether you're looking to prevent pelvic floor issues or manage existing symptoms, nourishing your body with a balanced diet can help you maintain optimal pelvic floor health and enjoy a life of comfort and vitality.

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