CF 179: Working Class Rising Death Rates & Nutrition Affects Chronic Pain
Today we’re going to talk about the fact that there are rising death rates among folks that are of working-class age. Not just the elderly. Why is that happening? Then we’ll talk about diet and chronic pain.
But first, here’s that sweet sweet bumper music
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You have found yourself smack dab in the middle of Episode #179
Now if you missed last week’s episode , we talked about
whether chiropractors cause disc herniations or not and we talked about how family doctors still aren’t getting the message. Make sure you don’t miss that info. Keep up with the class. On the personal end of things…..
This medical integration thing is about to take off. Wee ahve the contracts all drawn up, questions answered, and ready to get them all signed.
New EIN, new credentialing for me and the NP, and full steam ahead. Did you know that I have to re-credential under the new entity as well? What a pain in the backside, right? Hell yeah it is. I’m OK referring patients back and forth within the same group. You start to run into risk of getting in trouble with the Stark, anti-kickback laws when you are referring patients back and forth across different entities.
So, yeah….there’s that. I won’t bore you with the particulars but it’s definitely a ride we’re on and it’s go time.
Everything I’ve seen and experienced thus far tells me that we’re in a good spot and things are proceeding fairly smoothly. Slowly but smoothly. Next will be credentialing and that will slow everything down for a couple of months but that’s probably a good thing I’m guessing.
I’m fortunate to have a genius for a wife that understands a lot of the legal end of things that I’m just not talented at. Plus we have an attorney in Austin that literally wrote the integration law that has set it all up for us. And we have Dr. Tyce Hergert with Southlake Physical Medicine consulting us so we have a talented and very smart team.
Surrounding yourself with good people is the first step to success. We can’t be expected to be the smartest expert on everything that we encounter in our personal or professional lives. We need good people in our lives and our network. Good and talented people who have the right kind of heart for our style.
That’s exactly what I have right now so I’m very confident going forward. I don’t take big risks. I take measured, smart risks. That’s exactly where I’m at.
Alright, busy busy this week so let’s get scooting with this episode. Item #1
This one called “High and Rising Working-Age Mortality in the US. A Report From the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine”
by Mullan Harris, et. al.  published in JAMA on May 10, 2021. Servin em up steamy and saucy. Why They Did It
They say, “Life expectancy has increased in the US and in the world for the past century. In 2010, life expectancy plateaued in the US while continuing to increase in other high-income nations. In the US, life expectancy declined for 3 consecutive years (2015-2017) due primarily to an increase in mortality among working-age adults (those aged 25-64 years).1
Although the increase in mortality was first described among White middle-aged adults, mortality is now increasing among young and middle-aged adults and in all racial groups. This increase in premature death, claiming lives during the prime working ages, has important implications for individuals, families, communities, employers, and the nation.”
They found that average working-age mortality rates decreased after 2010 in 16 high-income countries but increased in the US. Three causes of death were identified as chiefly responsible: (1) drug poisoning and alcohol-induced causes, (2) suicide, and (3) cardiometabolic diseases. The first category includes mortality from mental and behavioral disorders, which often involve drugs or alcohol. Cardiometabolic diseases include endocrine, nutritional, and metabolic diseases (eg, diabetes, obesity); hypertensive heart disease; and ischemic heart disease and other diseases of the circulatory system (eg, arrhythmia, cardiomyopathy, heart failure).
Drug and alcohol use were the largest contributors to increasing mortality among working-age adults, accounting for 8% (an estimated 1.3 million) of deaths in this population between 1990 and 2017 (an average of 44 869 per year). The increase was largest among White male adults and older Black male adults.
They go on. They say, “The drug crisis was the product of 2 influences: an increase in access to legal and illegal drugs and the vulnerability of certain populations. The licensing of OxyContin in 1996, subsequent flooding of the market with prescribed opioids, and waves of highly potent heroin and fentanyl that coincided with growing demand for these substances have been described as a perfect storm.3
The drug supply expanded with limited government oversight, substantial marketing by the pharmaceutical industry, and overprescribing by physicians.”
With regards to Suicide, they say, “Suicide, which accounted for 569 099 deaths among working-age adults during 1990-2017 (an average of 20 325 per year), increased primarily among White adults, especially White men, and in less populated, rural areas. Few studies have established a cause for this trend. Economic stresses are a possibility; suicide is associated with economic downturns, wage stagnation, weak health care safety nets, and foreclosures.4
Another potential contributing factor is declining social support from churches, civic organizations, and families. Such social supports, which protect against self-harm, have declined in recent decades, especially among lower-educated White adults. Easier access to firearms is associated with increased suicide rates; however, the greater increase in nonfirearm suicides during this period suggests other causes. Other risk factors for suicide include mental illness, comorbid conditions, disability, and substance use.”
With regard to cardiometabolic disease they say, “Cardiometabolic diseases caused more than an estimated 4.8 million deaths among working-age adults during 1990-2017 (an average of 173 062 per year). The largest relative increases in cardiometabolic mortality occurred among younger adults (aged 24-44 years) in all racial/ethnic groups, White men and women, Black men (in recent decades), and those living in rural areas. Cardiometabolic mortality rates increased after 2010 for 2 reasons: (1) mortality from endocrine, nutritional, and metabolic diseases and hypertensive heart disease generally increased during 1990-2017 and (2) after a period of substantial reductions in mortality from ischemic heart disease and other circulatory diseases from the 1970s onward, progress stalled after 2010.”
“The report discusses 3 explanations for this trend. First, the most important was the increased prevalence of obesity and its cardiometabolic consequences. Obesity rates increased in the early 1980s as a period-based phenomenon that affected the entire population, but the related cardiometabolic consequences occurred in a cohort fashion; younger cohorts born in the 1970s-1990s experienced obesogenic environments their entire lives, whereas exposure in older cohorts was limited to older ages.5
As a result, many young adults are entering their work lives with a high prevalence of chronic diseases associated with obesity. “
“The recent increase in mortality among working-age adults shows no signs of receding. Obesity rates are unrelenting, drug- and alcohol-related deaths and suicide rates, already high among working-age adults, increased during the COVID-19 pandemic”
So what does all of that mean? Well, it means we are providers and we need to know this stuff and be aware of it. We need to be able to refer to specialists when we see the signs of drug or alcohol abuse, suicidal tendencies, or nutritional concerns.
It’s not just a, “‘hey he should get his crap together while he still can.” It’s a little more immediate than that I think .
CHIROUP ADVERTISEMENT Item #2
Item 2 today is called “Dietary Interventions Are Beneficial for Patients with Chronic Pain: A Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis””
by Field et. al.  published in Pain Medicine on November 17, 2020 and that’s a bit roasty. Why They Did It
The standard Western diet is high in processed hyperpalatable foods that displace nutrient-dense whole foods, leading to inflammation and oxidative stress. There is limited research on how these adverse metabolic drivers may be associated with maladaptive neuroplasticity seen in chronic pain and whether this could be attenuated by a targeted nutritional approach. The aim of this study was to review the evidence for whole-food dietary interventions in chronic pain management. How They Did It
What They Found
- A structured search of eight databases was performed up to December 2019.
- A meta-analysis was performed in Review Manager.
- Forty-three studies reporting on 48 chronic pain groups receiving a whole-food dietary intervention were identified
Wrap It Up
- A visual analog scale was the most commonly reported pain outcome measure, with 17 groups reporting a clinically objective improvement
- Twenty-seven studies reported significant improvement on secondary metabolic measures.
- Twenty-five groups were included in a meta-analysis that showed a significant finding for the effect of diet on pain reduction when grouped by diet type or chronic pain type.
There is an overall positive effect of whole-food diets on pain, with no single diet standing out in effectiveness. This suggests that commonalities among approaches (e.g., diet quality, nutrient density, weight loss) may all be involved in modulating pain physiology
Alright, that’s it. Y’all be safe. Keep changing our profession from your little corner of the world. Keep taking care of yourselves and everyone around you. Tough times are upon us but, the sun will shine again. Trust it, believe it, count on it.
Let’s get to the message. Same as it is every week. Store
Remember the evidence-informed brochures and posters at chiropracticforward.com
. The Message
I want you to know with absolute certainty that when Chiropractic is at its best, you can’t beat the risk vs reward ratio because spinal pain is primarily a movement-related pain and typically responds better to movement-related treatment rather than chemical treatments like pills and shots.
When compared to the traditional medical model, research and clinical experience show us patients can get good to excellent results for headaches, neck pain, back pain, and joint pain to name just a few.
It’s safe and cost-effective can decrease surgeries & disability and we do it through conservative, non-surgical means with minimal hassle to the patient.
And, if the patient treats preventatively after initial recovery, we can usually keep it that way while raising the overall level of health! Key Point:
At the end of the day, patients should have the guarantee of having the best treatment that offers the least harm. When it comes to non-complicated musculoskeletal complaints….
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We can’t wait to connect with you again next week. From the Chiropractic Forward Podcast flight deck, this is Dr. Jeff Williams saying upward, onward, and forward. Website
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Dr. Jeff Williams – Fellow of the International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine – Chiropractor in Amarillo, TX, Chiropractic Advocate, Author, Entrepreneur, Educator, Businessman, Marketer, and Healthcare Blogger & Vlogger
1. Harris KM, W.S., Gaskin DJ,, High and Rising Working-Age Mortality in the US: A Report From the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. JAMA, 2021.
2. Rowena Field, M.P., Fereshteh Pourkazemi, PhD, Jessica Turton, Kieron Rooney PhD,, Dietary Interventions Are Beneficial for Patients with Chronic Pain: A Systematic Review with Meta-Analysis. Pain Med, 2020. 22
(3): p. 694-714.