Are you often thrown off by vertigo and dizzy spells? The good news: These science-backed tips will keep you steady on your feet.
Go for an ancient Rx.
An ancient Asian herb called ginkgo biloba is more effective than the top prescription drug for vertigo, concludes research in the International Journal of Otolaryngology. “Ginkgo biloba enhances blood flow and decreases the thickness of blood, meaning better blood flow gets to the inner-ear area,” explains Stephanie Zeszutek, DO, a clinical assistant professor at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine. Best of all, 240 mg. of ginkgo per day corrects dizziness and balance issues without side effects. (As always, talk to a doctor before supplementing.)
Sip a golden latte.
Less sun exposure in the fall hampers your body’s ability to make vitamin D. Why that’s a problem? Vitamin D is such an effective fix for vertigo, recent research found that boosting levels reduced folks’ risk of dizzy spells by 82 percent! To up your levels, turn to almond milk or fortified dairy products. Also smart: Certain spice blends help regulate balance by improving blood flow to the inner ear and brain. To put these anti-dizzying ingredients together into one soothing and delicious drink, try this: Warm ½ cup of milk with a pinch of black pepper and ¼ tsp. each of turmeric, ginger and cinnamon. Then stir in ½ tsp. of vanilla extract and sweetener to taste.
Tilt your head.
The reason vertigo makes you dizzy when you roll over in bed: Ear “rocks” in inner-ear canals help register balance, and if they fall out of place, your sense of gravity gets thrown off. The fix: tilting your head in a series of moves to rebalance calcium crystals (“rocks”), halting vertigo within minutes for most folks, say German researchers. Watch the video below for an easy how-to on the “Epley maneuver.”
This story originally appeared in our print magazine.