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Back Pain Treatment: Diet

Healthy eating plays significant part in promoting your back's strength and health. Your body needs the right nutrients so that your muscles can move and support your spine. Without proper nutrition, your muscle can get weak, may stop working well, and become more prone to injuries that are caused by physical stress.

Your muscles need the right food to maintain their strength. Nowadays, healthy eating can be quite difficult. Fast food may satisfy your hunger, but they are not the foods that will do your health a favor. Most of these foods contain unhealthy carbohydrates, the kind that are absorbed rapidly by your body. As a result, your blood sugar shoots up, giving you an instant power boost, but this won't last long.

Your body needs foods that will give you energy slowly, over the course of a few hours. They can keep your muscles constantly supplied with the much needed fuel to carry out their important functions which include maintaining support as well as protection of your spine. Your diet should include more of the good stuff- complex carbohydrates and protein- and less of the unhealthy nutrients such as simple sugars and fats.

Vitamins and minerals are also important because they affect your body's ability to release the energy from foods and they help in maintaining your overall health. Below are some of the vitamins and minerals that can help boost your back's health.

Calcium is a key mineral for strong healthy bones. It promotes density and may prevent osteoporosis, a condition that causes bones mass to deteriorate as a result your bones become weak and brittle. Calcium also affects muscle contraction, transmission messages through the nerves, and the release of hormones. Foods rich in calcium include: broccoli, milk and dairy products, soybeans, tofu, beans, kale and salmon.

Vitamin D is the vitamin you need for strong bones and cartilage. It regulates blood levels of calcium, and phosphorus. Vitamin D helps your body absorb the amount of calcium you need, without this vitamin you won't benefit from the calcium in the food or supplements. Taking extra vitamin D may help people who are prone to back problems. The food sources of vitamin D include: Milk fortified with vitamin D, salmon, tuna, liver, and egg yolks.

Manganese is a trace mineral that helps in bone metabolism and growth. Research show that osteoporotic changes in bone can be caused by manganese deficiency, which appears to speed up bone breakdown while hampering new bone mineralization. The best sources of dietary manganese are beets, broccoli, whole grains, legumes, seeds, raspberries, chocolate, pineapples, Brussel sprouts, oats, mussels and clams.

Your meals should have more fresh fruits and vegetables, whole-grain cereals, whole-wheat breads, and different forms pasta, but don't drown them in fatty sauces, gravy, butter and dressing. In addition, you should limit candy bars, ice cream, soft drinks, cookies, and other sugary foods because they give too much energy too quickly. If this energy is not used by your body, it will be stored as fat and may end up in areas where you least want them to settle, such as your tummy. Increased fat in the abdominal area may increase your risk for back pain as well as a number of other health problems.

Healthy eating also includes watching your meal portions and proper meal timing. Try to eat smaller and more frequent meals. Research has shown that it is more effective in meeting the body's energy needs in contrast with 2 or 3 big meals daily.


Goldberg, B, Alternative medicine: the definitive guide. 2nd edition. 2002.

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