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Why Indigenous People Don’t Suffer from Back Pain

Most Americans experience back pain at some point in their lives. And for an unlucky 31 percent of them, treatments won’t work, and the pain will become chronic.

Believe it or not, there are a few cultures in the world where back pain hardly exists. One indigenous tribe in Central India reported essentially none.

Esther Gokhale, an acupuncturist in Palo Alto, Calif., believes she has figured out why.

Gokhale first started suffering from back pain after having her first child. The pain was so bad she eventually had surgery. But a year later, the pain returned and the doctors wanted to put her under once again.

Frustrated by the treatment she was receiving, she decided to search for a permanent solution herself. She traveled to the mountains in Ecuador, tiny fishing towns in Portugal, and remote villages of West Africa. Basically, cultures that were far removed from modern life.

She took special note of the women who spent seven to nine hours bent over, gathering chestnuts. Mysteriously, they didn’t have back pain. Their posture was “regal.”

Upon closer observation, she noticed that their spines were flat all the way down the back and then curved at the bottom to stick the butt out. She discovered the ideal spine was J-shaped.

promotes a lack of muscle tone and a lack of posture stability because the muscles get weak.

So it’s not that indigenous people have the golden ticket to stopping back pain. They’ve just got strong abdominal muscles and their lifestyle helps keep them that way.

By contrast, the American spine is shaped more like an ‘S’. It curves at the top and then again at the bottom, which is actually unnatural.

Gathering from her learnings, Gokhale worked her spine into a J-shape, and is now helping others to do the same. She wrote a book and has set up shop in downtown Palo Alto.

Scientists at the University of California, San Francisco’s Spine Center, are still unsure if Gokhale’s J-shape spine theory is accurate. But what they do know is that the people with J-shaped spines had to develop muscle strength to get their spines to look that way.

Americans are much more sedentary than traditional cultures. A sedentary lifestyle promotes a lack of muscle tone and a lack of posture stability because the muscles get weak.

So it’s not that indigenous people have the golden ticket to stopping back pain. They’ve just got strong abdominal muscles and their lifestyle helps keep them that way.

SOURCE: http://www.aol.com/article/2015/06/08/why-indigenous-people-dont-suffer-from-back-pain/21193028/


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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Patients:

Our patients, employees and family are our top priority at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

We ask you to not visit any of our locations if you have symptoms such as fever, sneezing, coughing and possible shortness of breath.

Please cancel your appointment and re-schedule once you are feeling better and are no longer suffering with symptoms.

Only non-symptomatic patients will be seen. No exceptions.

Accompanying family members – including children – are asked to remain in the waiting area and will not be allowed to enter the exam rooms.

During this time of high concern regarding the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) we are taking extra precautions to maintain the highest possible standards of safety and cleanliness. Please be advised that we are carefully following recommendations from both the CDC and WHO and are here to help guide you through this time if needed.

Some steps we are taking to keeping safe:

  1. We know how important cleanliness is and always maintain the highest standards of cleanliness. To further offer you peace of mind, we have increased the frequency of the cleaning of our office.
  2. Rest assured that hand washing is strictly followed. Hand sanitizer is available to all staff and patients.
  3. Additionally, if you have recently traveled to a country with high rates of the coronavirus or have been on a cruise, please reschedule your visit for at least 14 days from your return date. We will gladly accommodate your needs to reschedule. At that time, a telehealth interface can be arranged if necessary.

Find up-to-date and accurate information on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website and feel free to reach out with questions.

- Your team at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

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