Remember when you were a teenager and could eat all you want? Well as you age those days are OVER… for most of us anyways. Most adults gain an average of almost a pound a year as they age, and much of that weight gain is caused by changes in diet. Eating potato chips, cheesy french fries, sugar-sweetened drinks, excess white bread and low-fiber breakfast cereals can not only add inches to your waste line, and put strain your back.
And over time, scoliosis can cause low back pain, pain/numbness that shoots down one leg, leg weakness, and a slumped posture. Of course Osteoporosis, arthritis, degeneration of the disks and prior back surgery that left you with less pep in your step and more junk in the trunk doesn’t help. These problems are often linked to excess weight and poor fitness levels, especially loss of strength in the core (upperbody).
No matter what kind of back surgery (or any surgery) you undergo, rehabilitation NEEDS to include regular exercise and weight management. Even if you do not need surgery keep yourself health and fit will create a strong foundation for a healthy back. Some life phases and other conditions may allow a curve to increase, especially in women. Pregnancy or even ordinary weight gain can worsen a curve due to the extra weight being supported by the spine. Even osteoporosis can cause the curve to increase as the spine becomes weaker.
There are a number of simple steps you can take to lose excess weight so you won’t hinder your recovery or increase your curve.
- Regular exercise
- Yoga or Pilates can strengthen the core muscles.
- Walking can combat bone degeneration.
- Water exercise is a good option if walking is painful.
- Managing bone health
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Stop Smoking