Your Chair Is Killing You?
Your Chair Is Killing You?
If you’re reading this sitting down—the position we all hold more than any other, for an average of 8.9 hours a day—stop and take stock of how your body feels. Is there an ache in your lower back? Are you experiencing light numbness in your buttocks and lower thigh? Are you feeling a little down?
These symptoms are all so common, and they’re not good. They might well be caused by doing precisely what you’re doing—sitting. New research in the diverse fields of epidemiology, molecular biology, biomechanics, and physiology is converging toward a startling conclusion: Sitting is a public-health risk. And exercising doesn’t offset it. “People need to understand that the biomechanics of sitting are completely different from walking or exercising. Sitting too much is not the same as exercising too little. They do completely different things to the body.”University of Missouri microbiologist Marc Hamilton
In a 2005 article in Science magazine, Dr. James A. Levine, an obesity specialist at the Mayo Clinic, pinpointed why, despite similar diets, some people are fat and others aren’t. “We found that people with obesity have a natural predisposition to be attracted to the chair, and that’s true even after obese people lose weight,” Dr. Levine says. “What fascinates me is that humans evolved over 1.5 million years entirely on the ability to walk and move. And literally 150 years ago, 90 percent of human endeavor was still agricultural. In a tiny speck of time we’ve become chair-sentenced.”
Within a couple hours of sitting, healthy cholesterol plummets by 20 percent. So your posture and health of your spine are related to much more than back pain, it can affect the nerves that are protected by the spine or vertebrae, since these nerves help regulate every function of your body. There is a direct correlation between the health of your spine and the health of your entire body.
The chair you’re sitting in now is likely contributing to the problem. “Short of sitting on a spike, you can’t do much worse than a standard office chair,” says Galen Cranz, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley.
Generally speaking, the slight “S” shape of the spine serves you well. “If you think about a heavy weight on a C or S, which is going to collapse more easily? The C,” Cranz says. When you sit, the lower lumbar curve collapses, turning the spine’s natural S-shape into a C, hampering the abdominal and back musculature that supports the body. The body is left to slouch, and the lateral and oblique muscles grow weak and unable to support its weight.
This, in turn, causes problems with other parts of the body. When you’re sitting, you bear all that weight through the pelvis and spine, putting the highest pressure on your back discs. Judging by MRIs, even sitting with perfect posture causes serious pressure on your back.
Due to current lifestyles, many sit and work at a computer—I do not believe we were designed to do this. At the very least, take action by investing in a lumbar support or, better yet, an inflatable exercise ball to activate muscles in your lower back while you sit. (Do not sit on the ball in a slouched position.)
If you must sit on a chair, the best sitting alternative is perching in a half-standing position at barstool height that keeps weight on the legs and leaves the S-curve intact.
Limit or eliminate all culprits of bad posture—television watching, computer time, and excessive pressing exercises.
In summary, as you’ve come to realize, dealing with back pain can be a complicated undertaking. All the major anatomical parts—the nerves that are involved with the spine, the cartilage discs that protect the spine, and the postural muscles that support it—must be balanced to be healthy. When these functions are compromised or altered, inflammation, irritation, compression, and pain can result. And by this time, you should realize that treating only symptoms is not the answer. There is no magic potion to cure back pain, but let’s get one thing straight—you have quite a lot to gain by adopting healthy practices to take care of your back.
Why Didn’t My Doctor Tell Me All This Information?
You might wonder why your doctor has never told you about muscle imbalances or other potential causes of your back pain. Well, it could be several possible reasons. Health care has gotten so impersonal that some practitioners are just trying to see all their patients and be able to get home before dinnertime. Some medical schools tend to focus on treating symptoms, not causes. Many pharmaceutical companies are making billions of dollars in profits each year and might not be genuinely concerned with getting you out of pain. Many practices have hospital or group systems that restrict them from sending their patients anywhere but at their locations.
Most medical professionals work very hard and provide good services, but it is difficult to stay current with all of the new teachings and advances. Many insurance companies have a stranglehold on doctors and will only pay for certain things or place time restrictions on treatment and so a proper treatment plan does not get set up, let alone identifying the true cause of your pain. Fortunately for you, there are other approaches to resolving back pain that do not involve surgery or potentially harmful medications.
Here’s what some of the top medical researchers had to say about chiropractic…
“Manipulation [chiropractic adjustments], with or without exercise, improved symptoms more than medical care did after both 3 and 12 months.”– British Medical Journal
This means in just a matter of weeks you could be back on the golf course, enjoying your love life, or traveling again.
For 10 days only, I’m running a very special offer where you can find out how much this amazing treatment can help your back pain.
What does this offer include? Everything I normally do in my new patient evaluation.
Just call here’s what you’ll get…
An in-depth consultation about your health and well-being where I will listen…really listen…to the details of your case. A complete neuromuscular examination, full set of specialized x-rays (if necessary), and a thorough analysis of your exam and x-ray findings so we can start mapping out your plan to being pain free.
Life is too short to let pain slow you down. Call now 325-695-9355.