Fibromyalgia is described as constant and extensive pain across the body. While the exact cause of Fibromyalgia is unknown, researchers believe its can be psychological, genetic and neurological in nature. A person suffering from Fibromyalgia often finds themselves with other symptoms like fatigue and lack of sleep.
While there is no formal research to prove the correlation between food and Fibromyalgia, it had been noticed over the years that certain food is good for people suffering from Fibromyalgia while certain food should be avoided at all cost. So what should a diet of a person suffering from Fibromyalgia look like?
Have more of Vitamin D – Vitamin D is very important for our body as it assists in bone development and neuromuscular functioning. Since Fibromyalgia affects the musculoskeletal system of the body, Vitamin D can be a good way to strengthen the bones. Fish, egg, fortified cereals that have no refined sugars and no hydrogenated oils are good. Similarly mushrooms, salami and sausages are also food with high Vitamin D and should be considered as a part of the diet. A person with Fibromyalgia can also supplement his food with the intake of cod liver oil, which is rich in Vitamin A and D.
Have vegetables – Green leafy vegetables are generally considered good for the body and a person suffering from Fibromyalgia would not go wrong by having lots of vegetables. Many vegetables and even fruits have a high amount of Vitamins like A, B, C and E and they all help in making improving the immune system of our body.
Zucchini, Artichokes, Turnips, Asparagus, Spinach, Broccoli, Sprouts, Onions, Cauliflower, Celery, Cucumbers amongst others are good for a person with Fibromyalgia.
Keep hydrated – It is important for a person with Fibromyalgia to drink lots of water. Fatigue is common and water helps to keep the body hydrated and keep fatigue in check.
Additives – Amongst the things to avoid food additives including MSG (monosodium glutamate) and nitrates top the list. Both these additives can intensify pain.
Yeast and gluten – While there is no direct proof it is often suspected that yeast is increases joint and muscle pain. Gluten on the other hand can lead to a weak stomach and result in various stomach ailments and other digestive problems.
Dairy Products – Dairy products, especially milk is known to increase symptoms of Fibromyalgia. It is generally advisable to skip dairy products but you can continue having it if you find it has no adverse effect on you or your conditions.
Say no to caffeine – Fibromyalgia is often accompanied by lack of sleep and having anything with caffeine will only make things worse. Beverages like coffee should be avoided as it has high caffeine content. Similarly many energy drinks found in the market should be avoided as they all contain caffeine.
Nightshade Plants: Tomatoes, chili and bell peppers, potatoes, and eggplant should be avoided. "I have seen patients who do much better when they cut these foods out of their diet," says Kent Holtorf, MD, Medical Director, Holtorf Medical Group Center for Endocrine, Neurological and Infection Related Illness, Torrance, California.
What causes pain and what relives the pain is different for most Fibro patients. You can discover what works best for you by keeping a careful check on what you eat and the effect that it has on you. If one maintains a diary, over time you can safely gauge the food that is safe, good and the food that you need to avoid. The key is having a balanced diet of whole foods and if a food is not suitable to you, it must be replaced with an alternative which has the same nutritional value.
While food and a good diet is helpful, regular exercise is also very helpful in improving overall fitness. Cardio exercises, cycling are good and activities like swimming also prove to be beneficial for people with Fibromyalgia. People suffering from Fibromyalgia should be encouraged to regularly work out.
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Written by: Healthplus24 team
Date last updated: July 19, 2013