Category: Back Pain | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: January 4, 2016
If you’re a person who makes New Year’s resolutions, odds are you have at least one health-orientated resolution for 2016. You’re not alone, because health-related resolutions are the most common resolutions that people make this time of year. Making your health a priority is a great way to look and feel healthy, but that can be difficult if you’re slowed by problematic back pain. Today, we’re going to share some resolutions for back-pain sufferers that can help ensure 2016 is their happiest and healthiest year in a long time. Here are some resolutions to help keep your back pain at bay in 2016.
Get More Exercise
This is a no-brainer for everyone who wants to be healthier in 2016, but it’s especially important for people who experience back pain. Rest can be beneficial in the short-term, but ultimately you need to strengthen the muscles and connective tissues in your spine to help prevent painful flare ups.
- GOAL – Set exercise expectations. Aim for 4-5 exercise sessions of at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise a week. Write this goal down and put it in a place you’ll see every day. If you’re reminded of your commitment to better health every day, you’ll be more likely to follow through with that resolution.
Watch Your Diet
Your diet plays a key role in the pain equation, sometimes in ways that we don’t always see. For starters, if you eat a poor diet, you’ll likely gain weight, which will put more stress on your spine. Second, a poor diet can leave your more lethargic, which can make it less likely that you’ll get off the couch and get your daily exercise. Third, foods that are high in fat or sugar can trigger bouts of inflammation, so don’t just reach for the junk food.
- GOAL – We’re not saying you can’t indulge from time to time, but make a push to reach for healthier options on a more regular basis. Go shopping as a family and talk about healthy choices at the grocery store, plan meals ahead of time so you aren’t tempted to grab a fast food meal, and read up on serving and calorie information. All of these things can help you make smarter meal choices and reduce back pain flare-ups.
Aside from the basic ideas of getting more exercise and watching what you eat, you should also make it a point to mind your posture in the new year. If you spend hours each day at a desk or in a car, be mindful of your posture. Try not to slouch or lean forward while you’re sitting, because doing so can put excess stress on your spine.
- GOAL – Ask your employer about adding a standing desk at your workstation, put a towel or a pillow in your car to help push your spine in the right direction when you’re driving and try to keep your head directly over your spine when you’re watching TV or reading.