03 Sep Fruits and Veggies Against Bad Posture
September is Fruits and Veggies – More Matters Month, and your McAllen chiropractors at Hendrick Wellness Center would like to talk to you about how your diet – and weight – can affect the health of your spine.
It is widely recognized that being overweight can lead to hip and trunk movement issues, spinal issues, back pain, and other health-related problems. As we celebrate Fruits and Veggies More Matters Month, now is the perfect opportunity to revamp our diet by including more fruits and veggies into our meals.
Taking care of our spine requires a holistic approach and our diet – and weight – can play a major role.
Weight Gain and Bad Posture
You may be wondering, “What is the relationship between weight gain and posture?”
When you gain more weight than your muscles and bones can carry, you begin to affect the flexibility of your spine, the strength of your joints, and your posture. Issues with your spine and posture can lead to problems such as:
- Hyperlordosis Hyperlordosis is a condition that occurs when the natural lower curve of your spine begins to curve too much due to the strain caused by excess weight.
- Herniated Discs Overweight individuals may suffer from lower back pain caused by a herniated disc. The additional weight on the body and back can cause damage to the spinal structures and discs, leading to back pain and other health complications.
- Hip Pain Extra weight requires additional effort to move around. We use our hips a lot throughout the day and carrying around added weight can cause our hips to make exaggerated movements which can lead to pain and cause misalignments in your spine.
Fruits and Veggies in Your Diet
How can fruits and veggies help you avoid posture problems and spinal issues? Fresh vegetables and fruits tend to have a very low energy density, meaning they contain very little calories per every gram you consume of them. Adding them to your diet can help you avoid gaining that additional weight that can lead to health problems.
Consider the following when adding fruits and veggies to your diet:
- Fresh and natural is better. One thing to keep in mind is that fruits and vegetables work better if consumed in their natural state without added sugars. Same when cooking them. It is better to cook vegetables in ways that do not add calories to them. For example, sweet potatoes are an excellent source of vitamins, but adding marshmallows, brown sugar, and loads of butter really defeats the purpose.
- Substitution, not addition. Remember, even though veggies and fruits have a lower amount of calories, they still contain them. Simply adding them to your current diet will increase the amount of calories you consume, therefore increasing the chance of weight gain. Instead, try substituting high energy density foods with fruits or vegetables. For example, if you are making a sandwich, instead of adding that extra slice of cheese and ham, add some lettuce, tomato and maybe even avocado. This will reduce the calories in the sandwich and add flavor to your meal.
- Same amount, fewer calories. Adding vegetables and fruits to your diet doesn’t mean you have to lower the amount of food you consume. Actually, fruits and veggies can help increase the volume of your meals and make you feel fuller while reducing the amount of calories you eat. Take, for example, if you are about to eat a bowl of cereal for breakfast, don’t use as much cereal. Instead, slice some strawberries and add them to your cereal. This could increase the volume of your meals but lower your caloric intake.
- Vitamins and minerals. Not only will consuming more vegetables and fruits help you avoid weight gain but they are a great source of vitamins and minerals that help keep your body working properly.
Fruits and veggies are excellent food sources that can really make a meaningful difference in your diet and help you to maintain or lose weight. The added bonus of healthy weight means you can worry less about back pain and issues with your spine.
Let the experienced McAllen chiropractors at Hendrick Wellness Center help you reduce your back and joint pains. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.
At Hendrick Wellness Center, our experienced and dedicated McAllen chiropractors care about your entire health and wellbeing. Put your spinal health in our capable hands and let us help you gain a healthier daily life.
Contact us today at (956) 630-2255 to learn more about how we can help you.