Even though no food combinations have been proven to help fibromyalgia symptoms, there are few who claim eating certain foods or avoiding certain foods help them feel better.
Fibromyalgia is a condition that causes chronic musculoskeletal pain and fatigue. The cause of fibromyalgia is not yet known but there are various treatments that include food and supplements for the patient.
There hasn’t been any study carried out that suggests a specific diet for people with fibromyalgia but people have reported feeling better when they tend to eat or avoid certain foods.
It is important for everyone including fibromyalgia patients to have a well-balanced diet. A well balanced diet includes fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low fat dairy and lean protein such as chicken or fish.
One should avoid unhealthy foods such as fried, or anything processed and high in saturated fats. Eating a healthy diet or a balanced diet can keep your weight at check.
There is a co-relation between weight and fibromyalgia. According to a study in the journal Clinical Rheumatology, it was found that obese people with fibromyalgia had better quality of life once they lose weight. These people reported less pain and depression and slept better after losing a few pounds.
Researchers have looked at how eating certain diets affect fibromyalgia. There is evidence that eating a vegetarian diet or a vegan diet, which is high in plant antioxidants, might offer some symptom relief for fibromyalgia patients.
A study in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine has out found that people who ate mostly raw vegetarian diet had less pain.
However, this type of diet is very restrictive, and can be dangerous if not under a dietician’s care.
One of the symptoms of fibromyalgia is feeling tired and worn out. Eating certain foods gives you more energy.
It is therefore recommended to eat foods that can give you more energy. Such foods include almonds, broccoli, beans, tofu, oatmeal, and whole grain bread.
These foods will give you more energy throughout the day and make you feel more energetic rather than tired and worn out.
Note: Keep a food diary to find out which foods seem to trigger or improve your symptoms.
Herbs for fibromyalgia
Many fibromyalgia patients also tend to use herbal remedies; these herbal remedies are recommended by practitioners of traditional medicine.
However, no traditional herbal remedies have been registered with the medicines regulator MHRA specifically for the symptoms of fibromyalgia even though few studies have revealed that herbal remedies helped treat fibromyalgia symptoms.
St. John’s Wort
St. John’s wort (Hypericum Perforatum) extract is also known to be helpful in fibromyalgia because of its ability to relieve depression and improve sleep quality. It can be used in combinations with 5-HTP and Magnesium.
Grape seed extract
The extracts from grape seeds or the oil contains powerful antioxidants and natural anti-inflammatory compounds known as procyanidins. These help in preventing inflammatory which is a cause for muscle pain and soreness.
Valerian is a perennial flowering plant with sweetly scented pink or white flowers. The extract from it is known to help regulate sleep patterns as well as ease insomnia and anxiety, all common symptoms of fibromyalgia.
Siberian ginseng is also known as eleuthero. It is said to enhance immunity, fight fatigue, boost energy, and assist the body in dealing with stress. It is also frequently included in nutritional support programs for people with fibromyalgia.
Supplements for fibromyalgia
A person with fibromyalgia should include supplements as a part of their pain management regime.
There are many supplements people with fibromyalgia tend to take up to fight their symptoms. Some of these supplements include:
Vitamin D and Magnesium
Both Vitamin D and magnesium levels in people with fibromyalgia have been found to be low.
Vitamin D helps in fighting fibromyalgia pain. Since only few foods contain Vitamin D, Vitamin D supplements are the easiest way to ensure you get enough.
According to study published in the journal Pain, women who were deficient in Vitamin D were divided into two groups. The treatment group received oral vitamin D supplements for several weeks.
This group of women showed improved physical functioning and had less fatigue compared to the other group.
Fibromyalgia patients tend to feel tired and their energy levels seem to be low. When magnesium levels are low, energy levels are also low.
Therefore, magnesium supplements boost energy levels and has also produced good results in treating fibromyalgia.
Fish oil has anti-inflammatory properties that help in reducing fibromyalgia pains. Fish oil is believed to reduce the body’s production of inflammatory hormones called prostaglandins.
Commonly known as SAMe, S-Adenosyl methionine is a synthetic form of a compound that the body naturally produces.
SAMe is utilized in the manufacture of many brain compounds including serotonin and other neurotransmitters.
SAMe supplementation has been shown to be useful in improving mood and fibromyalgia in published clinical trials. It not only reduces chronic pain but can also boost your spirits.
5-HTP is converted to the important neurotransmitter serotonin and since deficiency of serotonin is linked to fibromyalgia, 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) tends to be effective in the treatment of fibromyalgia. 5-HTP may help to increase deep sleep and reduce pain.
A study published in the Alternative Medicine Review reports that supplement with 5-HTP may improve symptoms of depression, anxiety, insomnia and fibromyalgia pains.
Seek medical advice before taking those supplements
One should always remember to take professional medical advice before taking any of these herbs or supplements.
You may want to ask your doctor these questions before you jump to any:
- What is the right kind of supplement for me?
- What is the right amount or dosage for me?
- Should I take it with food?
- What time of the day should I take it?
- Will this supplement interact badly with my prescription?
- Does it have any side effects?
- Find out if you any allergies.