What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a rheumatic disorder that causes chronic achy muscular pain for no obvious reason. Usually the lower back, neck, shoulders, back of the head, upper chest, and/or the thighs are affected. The pain is described as burning, throbbing, shooting, and stabbing, and is often accompanied by headaches, strange sensations in the skin, insomnia, irritable bowel syndrome, and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome. Other symptoms include painful menstrual periods, anxiety, palpitations, memory impairment, dry eyes and mouth, dizziness, impaired coordination, and the need for frequent changes in eyeglass prescription. Depression also accompanies this disorder.

FibromyalgiaWe don't know what causes fibromyalgia. It seems to be related to problems with the immune system, but the relationship is not understood. Because many people affected by this disorder have a history of clinical depression, it is thought that there is a link between the condition and a disturbance in brain chemistry. Some experts believe the disorder is related to chronic fatigue syndrome.

Whatever the cause, it is apparent that malabsorption problems are common in people with fibromyalgia, so all nutrients need to be supplemented at higher than usual doses.

What makes fibromyalgia worse?

• Solanine interferes with enzymes in the muscle, which can lead to pain and discomfort. Recommendation: Limit your intake of green peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, and white potatoes.

• Saturated fats raise cholesterol levels and interfere with circulation. They promote the inflammatory response and increase pain. Recommendation: Limit your consumption of meat, dairy products, fried foods, processed foods, shellfish, and white flour products such as bread and pasta.

•  Caffeine, alcohol, and sugar are not good for this disorder. Sugar in any form promotes fatigue, increases pain, and disturbs sleep. Recommendation: Eliminate these substances from your diet if possible. If they have been a regular part of your diet, your symptoms will actually get worse for a short period of time. However, soon you will notice a marked improvement in your condition.

• Food allergies can worsen the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Recommendation: If you notice particular foods causing you problems, eliminate them from your diet and see if there is improvement.

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