Health Tip – Jan. 7 – Lower Your Risk For Lower Back Pain
Dee Dee – Health Tip
Do you know your risk of developing low back pain? Researchers at Stanford University analyzed data on 6,796 people and found that among those of normal weight the risk is very low, only 2.9 percent. In the overweight, the risk was 5.2 percent, in the obese, 7.7 percent, and in the morbidly obese, 11.6 percent.
More surprising is what the researchers learned about the amount of exercise needed to banish low back pain. They used accelerometers to track an individual’s daily exercise levels and found that overweight individuals who increased daily activity such as brisk walking, riding a bike or gardening by less than 20 minutes a day were able to reduce their incidence of back pain by 32 percent.
They also saw that the morbidly obese whose typical physical activity amounted to only 1.3 minutes per day could cut their chances of suffering back pain by 38 percent simply by increasing daily exercise time by only one minute.
The investigators cited two theories that may explain why obesity leads to low back pain: one holds that obestiy causes mechanical changes that affect the spine. The second is that obesity causes metabolic changes that influence levels of hormones and inflammation.