A stooped posture is associated with higher mortality rates

The Journal of the American Geriatic Society states, “Older men and women with hyperkyhpotic posture have higher mortality rates. Hyperkyhpotic postures in older people are usually due to spinal degenerative changes or vertebral compression fractures. There are several reasons why spinal degeneration and compression fractures may be associated with a shortened life and health span.

1) Nerve damage

Since one of the main functions of the spine is to protect the nervous system spinal degeneration can lead to nerve damage.

Dr Henry Winsor did 50 autopsies at the University of Pennsylvania examining diseased organs, the nerves that supplied that organ, and the vertebrae that protected that nerve root. He found that 96% of the nerves that supplied damaged organs came from diseased vertebral levels.

This correlation was true in 20 cases of heart disease, 13 cases of liver disease, all 9 cases of stomach disease, all 26 cases of lung disease, all 8 cases of prostate and bladder disease. 

Reference: Winsor, H. Sympathetic segmental disturbances II. The evidence of the association, in dissected cadavers, of visceral disease with vertebral deformities of the same sympathetic segments. The medical times, November 1921, pp. 267-271

2) Organ compression

A hunched forward posture compresses the lungs and other organs in the chest, which leads to restricted breathing and circulation hence limits oxygen levels in the body.

3) Unhealthy lifestyles

The things that cause the spine to degenerate or to easily fracture are the very same things that cause the rest of the body to degenerate or easily fracture. 

  • Sedentary living leads to weakening of bone, degeneration and restriction of spinal joints and is generally unhealthy for all systems of the body. 
  • Prolonged periods of mental stress can cause increased muscle tension and lead to spinal joints locking up (which leads to joint degeneration) as well as play a major role in many diseases such as high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.
  • Poor nutrition leads to weakness and slow recovery in the spine and in the rest of the body (eg vitamin-d deficiency can lead to weak bones, increased cancer risk and lowered immunity).

Regular chiropractic care release locked up areas in the spine and keeps the spine mobile this limits spinal joint degeneration. Healthy lifestyle habits keep a mobile spine moving and foster strong spinal bones.

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