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mazingerz88's avatar

Does being overweight contribute to back pain?

Asked by mazingerz88 (17834 points ) June 1st, 2011

In the past three years, I’ve come to noticed that whenever I’m overweight my back aches more than usual. When after dieting and losing the excess pounds, my back seemed to feel better. Can you have back pain solely because of being overweight or it could only be just a possible contributing factor? Thanks. : )

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10 Answers

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

Yes, you can have back pain just because you have extra weight there.

creative1's avatar

If you get extra belly fat it can put strain on your back pulling in a way it shouldn’t. If you go to the gym and work on the muscles in the back to stregthen the muscles back there it will help with all back pain. A trainer will be able to help you with what machines work best.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Do you wear a bra? If so, and weight is put on but the bra size isn’t adjusted accordingly, that can lead to back pain. An easy test is to observe if the pain stops shortly after taking it off.

mazingerz88's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer A bra? No not personally no. guy here : )

Judi's avatar

Try carrying around a 30 lb weight for an hour. even as little as 10 lbs lost can offer relief. Yet another reason to stay healthy and active.
I notice the pain in my feet when I weigh more.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

Absolutely! Your back muscles are used for posture, walking, sitting, etc. and carrying around extra weight gives it quite more of a workout. If your fat is in your belly, that is ever worse for your back. Also, overweight people tend to have less muscle and therefore less muscle in their backs to help carry the load around.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

My husband has a very bad back, he’s quite young and has already had 2 surgeries. His physical therapist said that a combination of his Buddha belly and lack of muscle tone in his lower back contributed significantly to the pain he experiences, regardless of the internal issues.
So YES. Definitely.

Stinley's avatar

@mazingerz88 do you put the weight on round your middle as a classic beer belly? As others have said, this would put strain on the back. @creative1 said that you should strengthen your back muscles but I have read the opposite – strengthening your stomach muscles will support your back better, so even if the paunch develops again, keeping that area well exercised should help keep your back healthy. If you are a beer belly shape/ apple shaped like me then it’s important to keep exercising as we are more likely to get heart disease, but any regular exercise helps reduce that risk.

john65pennington's avatar

While in uniform, I and many other police officers constantly complained of back pain. One day, I decided to weigh my police uniform, including my socks and underwear. The total was 32 pounds.Being overweight was not a problem. So, being overweight, for your height, does not necessarily apply to this senerio.

After retiring and losing the 32 pounds of uniform, my back pain is minimal.

And yes, being overweight does effect a persons back pain. Your back has to support that extra weight and sometimes it cannot handle the load. This also can make your back easily a target for muscle spasms.

Best bet is to daily exercise your back muscles to keep them strong.

creative1's avatar

@Stinley You actually want to strengthen your body core, you can do that with yoga, it also increases your flexibility. But according to my back doctor that it was the increase in the back muscles is what helps keep my back from going out. I’m not allowed to do any sort of stomach muscle exercises due to a surgery I had on my stomach and my back hasn’t gone out in years since the weight loss and working out.

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