Are you eating your way into spinal disc degeneration?

Let’s begin this series of articles by describing the spinal discs and their function a little more fully to help understand how poor diet can impact disc health and how a safe and healthy diet can help prevent and even rebuild spinal disc degeneration.

The bones of the spine are separated by soft, pliable discs that serve several major functions in the health of the spine and in the movement of the body. As the body bends and twists, these discs flex to allow the spine to move. These spinal discs also act as shock absorbers to prevent compression fractures of the spine bones. They also provide the space between the spinal bones to allow room for the nerves that pass between the bones and into all parts of the body to transmit the information your body needs to function.

The outer portion of the disc is a tough but flexible fibrous material which serves, among other functions, to keep the soft, jelly like inner disc substance in place (think of a jelly dough nut) And, just like everything else in the body, the spinal disc depends upon proper nutrition to gain and maintain optimum health.

In brief, when a disc is not healthy, it begins to degenerate. As it degenerates, it compresses. As it compresses, body motion can become restricted, nerves can become pinched, and pain can result – often showing itself in the lower back, neck, and between the shoulder blades, numbness in the extremities (hands and feet), often mistakenly diagnosed as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. These are all symptoms that are most often created by disc compression – poor disc health.

The disc receives the nutrition it needs (read that as “is fed”) through fluids from the body that contain both water (to keep the joint flexible) and essential vitamins and minerals. What you eat and what you don’t eat can have a remarkable long-term impact on disc health. If your body does not receive the proper nutrition – if your body receives improper nutrition, the discs in the spine are not given the opportunity to maintain the balance of nutrients they need to function normally. They begin to degenerate and, over time, the body begins to experience the effects of spinal degeneration disease. Neck and back pain begin to show themselves and the body responds with decreased mobility which, in turn increases the degeneration and you find yourself in what seems to be a never ending spiral of decreasing health.

In the next article, we will describe for you what foods impact spine health, what diet can do to improve spinal health, and even talk about why you need to take steps now to prevent and even repair nutritional damage to your spine and through spinal health to your entire body. Campanella Chiropractic reminds you that it is a total wellness partner in your overall health!