December 23, 2021
Just in case my patients need some extra motivation not to overdo the sweets this coming week, I thought it would be a good time to do a post on this crazy discovery of the sugar/low back connection I made with a patient of mine recently!
My patient Dustin came in with lower back pain that was recently very aggravated. He also had some occasional shoulder discomfort. We dug in with some Applied Kinesiology muscle testing and quickly discovered that his left latissimus doors, better known as the lat, muscle was neurologically inhibited aka shut off aka just not working well. The lat muscle is a major back AND shoulder stabilizer muscle, as it attaches into the back of the arm all the way down into the top back of the hip bone. The muscle name literally means "broadest muscle in the back" in Latin.
Commonly, I will see patients with back pain due to a simple injury or yes, postural stresses, etc. However, also commonly, I will see patients with back pain due to issues that are more internal in nature. This was the case with Dustin. The lat muscle happens to be related to the pancreas, which has multiple functions, a major one of which is regulating our blood sugar levels by releasing insulin. Oftentimes, blood sugar issues, including overconsumption of sugar or rapid spikes and falls in blood sugar levels, can cause the lat muscle to weaken, due to its relation to the pancreas. When I asked Dustin if he had recently been consuming higher amounts of sugar, he instantly admitted to it and it was as if a light bulb went off in his head. He couldn't believe his body had manifested his recent sugar habit in such a way, yet it made sense to him, and me.
We treated Dustin's latissimus muscle by stimulating the reflex point for the pancreas, adjusting at certain spinal levels, and putting him on a supplement to help with sugar metabolism. We even used mind-body techniques to treat some emotions that were a driving force behind his increased sugar consumption.
By the end of the visit, Dustin's latissimus dorsi muscle was fully functioning and firing again, and his lower back was stabilized, the pain drastically reduced. To maintain our corrections, dietary modifications definitely had to be made.
This is a great example of a scenario where an internal issue and diet can trigger a musculoskeletal issue, and further evidence as to why taking a holistic approach is the best possible way!