Recent studies have revealed that one third of Americans older than 55 have chronic or neck pain. This means that back pain is a real problem in modern society.

Researchers have found that indigenous cultures don’t have back pain! But, how is this possible? They has having hard, strenuous lives compared to ours.

Esther Gokhale is an acupuncturist who was compelled to study indigenous people to understand why it is that modern living caused back pain and indigenous living didn’t.

To find an answer Gokhale traveled to some of the most remote locations on Earth.

The biggest difference she saw was in how these people walked, sat and stood. She have a picture in her book of two old women who spend seven to nine hours everyday, bent over, gathering water chestnuts. The unbelievable truth is they don’t have a back pain.

Surprisingly, she found that their spines were differently shaped. Instead of having S shaped spines like adults often do, they had J shaped spines.

The left picture display the perfect J-shaped spine.

 A woman in Burkina Faso (right) holds her baby so that his spine stays straight.

 The center image shows the J-shaped and S-shaped spine. 

After this discovery, she decided to try and get her spine into that J shape. When she finally did it her back pain disappeared.

Another question we ask ourselves is why do we have differently shaped backs?

Dr. Praveen Mummaneni from the University of California thinks it’s how we live.

He says that the sedentary lifestyle promotes a lack of muscle tone and a lack of postural stability because the muscles get weak.

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