What You Don’t Want for Christmas: Weight Gain and Back Pain

In a recent survey conducted by SpineUniverse, 69%
of people estimated that they typically gain up to 8 pounds during the
holiday season. Another 9% put their weight gain at over 8 pounds.

 Those extra pounds from sugar cookies and big family dinners don’t come
off easily, either: it takes 60% of the people surveyed up to 10 months
to lose their holiday weight. 11% said that they never lose the weight.
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine agrees: most
people can’t shake their holiday weight until the next fall–just in
time for the Halloween candy.

 So year after year, people add on weight during the holidays, and in
the long-term, that holiday weight gain can add up–to back pain. Dr.
Steven Richeimer, a member of the SpineUniverse Editorial Board and
Chief of Pain Medicine at the University of Southern California, Keck
School of Medicine, explains, "If you’re overweight, your spine may be
overworked as it tries to carry that extra weight. This can produce
injury and back pain."

He continues, "When you’re overweight, you’re more likely to injure
your back, and it is more difficult to recover–the result can be
chronic back pain. Additionally, being overweight can exacerbate or
even lead to symptoms of degenerative disc disease, compression
fracture, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, and

Thinking about back pain isn’t exactly full of holiday cheer. But
suffering excruciating back pain is even less cheerful. For some simple
steps to follow this holiday season to prevent the typical holiday
weight gain, visit Spine Universe.