Is the bizarre phenomenon ‘hourglass syndrome’ putting you at risk of nasty health problems?

You’ve probably never heard of Hourglass Syndrome, although it may be your own fault.

However, experts have found that the condition can lead to nasty health complications like back pain and acid reflux.

Hourglass syndrome can be dangerous to health and cause serious complications


Hourglass syndrome can be dangerous to health and cause serious complicationsPhoto credit: Getty

Hourglass syndrome occurs when someone pulls in their stomach too much, perhaps to appear thinner.

experts at medical net explains that when a person sucks in, their ribs and diaphragm pull inward.

Normally, when you inhale, the diaphragm — a muscle that sits below the lungs — expands outward, helping the lungs expand.

While this can create the illusion of an hourglass figure and maybe even a smaller waist in the long run, according to Medicine Net, it’s not a natural way your body moves.

“Many want a flat stomach,” write the experts.

In some cases, the body may develop Hourglass Syndrome as a defense reaction to pain, or it may be due to poor muscle growth since childhood.

health problems

Medicine Net revealed the health issues of Hourglass Syndrome.

Lower back pain is one of the most common problems.

Health experts explained: “The diaphragm is an important stabilizer of the lower back. So if it doesn’t work properly, the lower back is left weak.”

“This means the other muscles have to work more efficiently to compensate for the dysfunction of the diaphragm in the lower back.”

Holding your stomach can also cause neck pain because your chest and shoulders rise when you breathe instead of the stomach expanding outward.

In addition, damage to the diaphragm can increase the risk of acid reflux.

“In addition to its breathing and balancing functions, the diaphragm also acts as a sphincter, helping to prevent stomach contents from backing up down the throat,” experts say.

dr Adam Taylor, an anatomist from Lancaster University, said this syndrome can put strain on the pelvic floor muscles.

He wrote inside The conversation: “If you look at the abdomen like a tube of toothpaste, squeezing it in the middle creates pressure at the top and bottom.”

“The pressure at the top interferes with breathing by preventing the diaphragm (the main muscle involved in sucking in air) from being able to pull down that far.

“The pressure on the ground exerts a greater force on the pelvic floor muscles because the volume of the abdominal cavity decreases when the abdomen is sucked in.”

“In addition, increased forces act on the joints of the spine and pelvis, since the abdominal muscles are less able to absorb shocks when they are tense.”

The syndrome can also cause a “wrinkle or crease in the abdomen” because the lower abdominal muscles are less tight than the upper ones.

The belly button can also rotate further upwards as the lower abdomen becomes the “puppy”.

One woman revealed on TikTok that the change in her abdominal composition resulting from Hourglass Syndrome gave her a “second set of breasts.”

Is it repairable?

Hourglass syndrome is not permanent. But just as it takes time for the method to become second nature, it takes time to unlearn it.

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One of the best things you can do is to strengthen the core muscles in your abdomen through exercise.

Physical therapy can help teach proper diaphragm management and release tension elsewhere in the body.

Russell Falcon

Russell Falcon is a USTimesPost U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Russell Falcon joined USTimesPost in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing

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