Back Pain Weight

How To Manage Lower Back Pain and Lose Weight

Chronic back pain is a major problem. Most people have had at least one episode of back pain in their lifetime. 50% of those who had back pain will go on to have chronic back pain. This chronic pain syndrome is second only to the common cold as a cause a lost work days. Besides lost income, chronic back pain leads to several detrimental behavioral adaptations. People suffering with chronic pain tend to avoid activities because of fear of re-injuring their back. This is termed fear avoidance behavior, and it results in a more sedentary lifestyle, weight gain, muscle and cardiovascular de-conditioning, and depression. In this article I will review four easy steps you can take to manage your pain and lose weight.

STEP 1: See a Back Pain Specialist. If your pain is present for more than two weeks or you have other symptoms associated with you back pain like fever, weakness, numbness, loss of bowel or bladder control see a back pain specialist. Back pain specialists are physicians who are specially trained in the diagnosis and management of spinal and other musculoskeletal disorders. These specialists can be medical doctors, doctors of osteopathy or doctors of chiropractic. The reason you have to get a medical evaluation is because lower back pain is a symptom, that has many causes. Most of the time, back pain is musculoskeletal in nature. Disorders like a herniated intervertebral disc, or inflamed spinal joints, fall into the musculoskeletal disease category. However, more ominous conditions can cause the same symptoms as a sprained back. These diseases could be spinal tumors ( which could be cancerous), spinal infection, or fracture. There can also be diseases of abdominal or pelvic organs that cause back pain. Diseases like appendicitis, aneurysms, kidney disease, bladder infections, and ovarian disorders can cause pain that is felt in the back. Therefore it is wise to first rule out serious pathology before embarking on an exercise program.

STEP 2: Start Moving. After you have seen your physician and eliminated the possibility of serious medical disease, your next step should be to resume your regular activity. According to the results of a review reported on line in the Cochrane Database of Systemic Reviews (a highly respected medical review consortium), advice to stay active vs. bed rest offered more benefits in pain management and faster return of function in patients with acute lower back pain. Increasing your activity level relaxes muscular spasms, and quickens the healing of injured spinal tissue. Resuming activity strengthens your mindset and gives you control over your pain. An active lifestyle can go a long way in helping to ward off anxiety and depression, which is common in patients who have chronic low back pain.

STEP 3: Strengthen Your Core Muscles With Five Simple Exercises.

Exercise 1, Walking: Walking as little as 10 minutes a day (brisk and continuous ) starts the body's metabolic activity and enhances healing. Walking heats up the body, thereby activating the healing enzymes in our spine. Walking strengthens the legs, the hips, the abdomen and back muscles. Walking burns calories and fat. Walking elevates our mood and relieves anxiety.

Exercise 2, Wall Squats: Begin standing approximately two feet away with back to wall. Feet shoulder width apart. Raise and extend arms at shoulder level. Movement: Activate core muscles. Sit hips back and down towards wall, performing squat until hips touch wall. Pause momentarily. Return to start position.

Exercise 3, Prone Cross Crawl: Starting position: Begin lying on floor face down. A pillow may be placed under you forehead for support. Arms should be extended above head. Movement: Activate core muscles. Lift one arm upward as opposite leg simultaneously lifts off floor. Slowly return to start position. Repeat alternating sides.

Exercise 4, Neutral Spine Sit Up: Begin lying on you back with knees bent. Place both hands underneath low back with palms down. Movement: Lift shoulders off the floor, trying to maintain a neutral spine position without rounding the lower back. Elbows can remain in contact with floor during the sit up.

Exercise 5, Passive Low Back Stretch: Begin lying on floor with arms extended at sides. Knees and hips are bent to 90 degrees with lower calves and heels on chair. In this position relax the lower back, allowing back to slowly flatten against floor. Relax in this position for ten minutes.

STEP 4: Studies show that reducing your caloric intake by 500 calories is enough to start losing weight. This can easily be done by starting to read the labels on the foods you are eating. Pay attention to how much food is in a serving size, and compare it to what you typically eat for that food. It is so easy to unknowingly overeat. It is not necessary to eliminate your favorite foods. I recommend that you limit the volume of food you eat. If you find it difficult to control your cravings talk with your doctor. They can get you additional support in this area.

As you can see, the simple steps that help to reduce your back pain, are also the steps that will simultaneously trim your waistline, and improve your overall health and well-being. I challenge you to use the information in this article to change your life and improve your health.

Dr. Fortuna has a popular online website with lots more useful advice like this for you. Watch videos and see pictures of his favorite exercises that will help you eliminate your pain and lose weight. You can also sign up for a free newsletter designed to help you feel great. Go now to


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