How to Prevent a Hernia from Occuring

quit smoking to prevent hernia

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  • Avoiding tight-fitting clothing, as this can add pressure to your chest and make heartburn worse
  • Strenuous exercise and overexertion while lifting weights are some of the major causes of hernias.
  • Obesity is a major risk factor for hernia patients, as it may slow down the healing process

Preventing muscle weakness that may cause a hernia isn't always possible. However, there are techniques that may reduce strain on your body and potentially prevent the development of a hernia. Here are some tips to consider:1

Avoid straining during bowel movements or urination.

Stop smoking.

Lift objects properly,2 using your legs instead of the back and abdomen.3

Raise the head of the bed by about 6 inches4 to help prevent acid and food from going back up the throat, as well as inhibit heartburn.5

Avoid tight-fitting clothing, as it can add pressure to your chest and make heartburn worse

Change Your Diet and Practice Good Eating Habits

Avoiding spicy, oily and acidic foods,6 as well as those that are difficult to digest  is crucial to preventing a hernia, since they may inflame the stomach lining and make it difficult for the hernia to heal. Fresh, organically grown and GMO-free fruits and vegetables, grass fed meats and pasture-raised chicken, and high-quality good fats are foods that hernia patients should consider eating more of. Drinking high-quality filtered water is also a must.  

When consuming your meals, make sure to do so at a leisurely pace. Avoid lying down after eating and try to wait at least three to four hours before sleeping to prevent undigested food and acid from climbing back up your throat.7,8

Cut Back On Exercise, But Don’t Avoid It Completely

Strenuous exercise and overexertion while lifting weights are some of the major causes of a hernia.9 Avoid lifting weights that are too heavy for you as much as you can,10 and ensure that you perform easier or lighter workouts if you are healing from a hernia or want to prevent them for recurring.

Reduce Your Weight to Put Less Strain on the Body

Obesity is a major risk factor for a hernia,11 and maintaining a healthy body weight is a must in the prevention process.12 Consuming smaller meals may also decrease the pressure placed on the stomach and on the esophagus.13 You can also work with a doctor or a dietitian who may recommend the foods best for your condition.14

Furthermore, promote smooth bowel movements by drinking high-quality filtered water and eating fiber-rich foods. A hernia can also develop if you strain too much when you pass stools, just as when you strain too much while working out.15

Practice Stress-Relieving Techniques

Some hernias can  appear because of stress and anxiety, as your organs and your metabolism may not function optimally if there are excessive amounts of stress hormones in the body. In some cases, stress can exacerbate stomach issues like acid reflux, possibly leading to worsened hernia or a higher hernia risk. Consider practicing acupuncture, meditation, yoga or the Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), using essential oils for aromatherapy and/or massages to alleviate stress.16

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Hernia Causes

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Hernia Treatment

Hernia Surgery

Hernia Prevention

Hernia Diet

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