Everyone has healthy bacteria in their gut, but it can become out of balance, with the "bad" bacteria taking over. Things like stress, illness, and antibiotics can disrupt the levels of good bacteria. The bacterial balance (called your microbiome) in our intestines is a pivotal factor in our wellness. Our guts are responsible for producing most serotonin, a primary feel-good chemical needed for emotional wellbeing. The link between wellness and our intestines is irrefutable for physical and emotional health.
Knee stretches are essential to your back health but get overlooked time and time again. First, always consult with your doctor to ensure that your pain is not stemming from an injury before undertaking any new stretching routine. Knee stretches are quite simple and comprehensive. Your knee combines and connects your upper and lower leg and is supported by many muscle groups. It is important to stretch out all of these muscle groups. Using the Backbridge can help you alter the stretches' intensity by using different levels of the Backbridge. These stretches are great for all ages as long as you always listen to your body and don’t overstretch. This knee stretch routine can be done in about 2 minutes (30 seconds ) per muscle group. My book, The Ultimate Backbridge Stretch Book, details many stretches while using the Backbridge, for all body parts.
I often get bewildered looks when a patient complains of lower back pain, and I start to examine their neck, shoulders, and feet. The patient thinks that since they are suffering from lower back pain, the problem lies in their lower back. However, more often than not, this is not the case.
I like to use the analogy of the lights going out. There could be a localized problem within the lightbulb itself, but it’s more likely that you blew a circuit breaker. Think of an electrical problem that overrode the system and caused power outages in multiple areas. Back pain is just like a circuit breaker. Most people aren’t experiencing pain in just one specific area, like a lightbulb, but are likely having pain in multiple areas, like a circuit breaker.
A cause of the “circuit breaker of back pain” could be stress, poor posture, or digestive upset. If you don’t fix the underlying circuit breaker issue, you will constantly be replacing the bulbs. I have three guided resources to help determine what could be causing your back pain. Click here to take my structural assessment, here to take my emotional assessment, and here to take my digestive assessment.
Eastern cultures that created acupuncture views the body as having energy sources. This is an approach that I certainly subscribe to! This shift in approach can really make a difference in understanding your back pain's causes and solutions.
In my book The Good Sh*t, I have emphasized the importance of consuming foods made with high-quality ingredients. Simply put, a turkey sandwich made from fresh bread and real turkey can be very different than a turkey sandwich that is filled with preservatives.
So many of us think poop is not important. But our poop actually is the greatest indicator of gut health and is the key to discovering which foods help our own unique digestive system operate optimally. Instead of touting bullsh*t fad diets, my new book out this October, The Good Sh*t teachers us what a good sh*t is, what it should look like, and how to have a good one regularly so that we can start looking and feeling better.
Are you suffering from back pain? The cause could be your love of spicy foods. There is much debate regarding whether spicy foods are helpful or harmful, and the consensus is that it’s a bit of both. Many of my patients are shocked to hear that their back pain could be from spicy food. As you may know from my previous post, Is Your Diet Causing Your Back Pain, there is a direct link between digestive function and back pain. I even wrote an entire book on the subject called The Back Pain Relief Diet.
While doing my research for my book, Sit-Ups Are Stupid & Crunches Are Crap, I was blown away at how important it is for people to get a flat stomach, and not just for looks! The New England Journal of Medicine published a study of 360,000 Europeans in November 2008 stating that people with the most belly fat have twice the risk of premature death! Other than drinking and smoking, belly size is the largest indicator or premature death. Additional studies reveal that belly size is the leading predictor of heart disease, high blood pressure, and cholesterol levels, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Large bellies also raise the risk of dementia by three times.
Many people love carbonated beverages. The consensus is that soda is a bad thing, and many people have opted for healthier options, such as sparkling waters. And, alcoholic beverage companies not only sell beer, but also there is a growing trend of consumers preferring flavored alcoholic, carbonated beverages. Though flavored sparkling water may be a healthy alternative to soda, and people think flavored alcoholic beverages may be healthier than beer, these carbonated beverages can create a lot of problems for your body. As I discussed previously in Is Your Diet Causing Your Back Pain, an individual’s diet is a leading cause of back pain.
Celebrities like Kristen Bell, Anne Hathaway, and Liam Hemsworth have all ditched their vegan diets (some due to health complications!). Even some popular vegan bloggers, including Yovana, who at one point had over a million Instagram followers, have stopped preaching veganism. And, many vegan bloggers have faced backlash after dropping their vegan diets. Yovana quickly learned this after she was seen eating fish in a now-viral video posted by a fellow vlogger, which resulted in a huge outcry from her followers. “I was in shock and felt confused and ashamed at the response,” she says.
Previously, I explained how a Backbridge could help you relieve pain caused not only by forward hunching, but also aging, exercise (like sit-ups), and daily life stressors. You may see your chiropractor or physical therapist a few times a month. For a fraction of the time and cost of a chiropractor or physical therapist visit, you can use the Backbridge to get back pain relief at home, increase flexibility, and sustain back health. I believe it is important to complement treatment from medical practitioners with regular and routine stretching to help reduce soreness and tightness, and increase flexibility.