Posts Tagged ‘fibromyalgia’

Fibromyalgia and Food

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a disorder that affects everyone a little differently. Therefore, promoting a one diet approach for every FM patient doesn’t make a lot of sense. However, according to Ginevra Liptan, MD, medical director of the Frida Center for FM in Portland, OR, it is clear that what is included in a diet vs. what is eliminated makes a big difference for many FM patients. It has been reported that 42% of FM patients surveyed indicated their symptoms worsened after eating certain foods. Here are some recommendations about diet to consider:

  1. Pay attention to how food makes YOU feel. Many FM patients have sensitivities to particular foods, but this is highly variable from person to person. Sensitivity to MSG, certain preservatives, eggs, gluten, and dairy are quite common. Keep a daily food journal for at least 2 weeks and write down the foods eaten and any associated symptoms like headaches, indigestion (irritable bowel syndrome irritation – IBS), or fatigue.
  2. Try Eliminating Certain Foods. Many FM patients have irritable bowel symptoms, and using an elimination diet can help determine which foods to cut out. Try it out for no less than 6-8 weeks in order to get the best results. Then, add it back into your diet and pay attention to how it makes you feel. The most commonly eliminated foods are dairy and gluten and the most common improvement is in fatigue reduction and reduced IBS symptoms like bloating and constipation.
  3. If you think you might have food sensitivities or allergies, talk with us.Sometimes it is best to obtain an evaluation from an allergist for food allergy testing. Dietitians can also assist in assuring that you don’t eliminate essential nutrients when foods are eliminated from the diet.
  4. Make it easier to Eat Healthy. Everyone, including the FM sufferer, should try to eat fruits, vegetables, whole grains (if not gluten sensitive), and lean meats or protein. A well balanced diet will give you more energy, which in turn, can improve your overall health. When pain and exhaustion are present, choose healthy foods that do not require a lot of preparation such as buying pre-washed vegetables, or purchase pre-prepared foods like beet salad and quinoa.
  5. Use Food to Help Fight Fatigue. Consume foods in a way that increases energy levels and prevent fatigue. Anecdotally, FM patients have reported that eating small meals frequently vs. restricting themselves to 3 meals a day can keep blood sugar levels more even and prevent the “hypoglycemic lows.” A snack high in protein around 3pm can prevent mid-day fatigue.  Make sure your breakfast includes some protein and whole grains (again, assuming there is no gluten sensitivity). Focus on getting enough sleep and staying active during the day as these can also prevent fatigue during the day.
  6. Check on Your Supplements. Some supplements have significant side effects and can interact with medications. Talk to the prescribing doctor or pharmacist about this. For example, antidepressants and certain supplements can interact.
  7. Focus on Your Overall Well-Being. A multiple approach to managing FM symptoms works better than a single approach. Things like yoga, massage, and deep breathing exercises, as well as routine chiropractic treatments can improve the overall quality of life. Increasing the quality of life is the ultimate goal for managing the FM patient. Going to bed at a consistent time, not eating too late, and exercising regularly are key components.

If you, a friend or family member requires care for FM, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shown by choosing our services!

Fibromyalgia, Sleep and Restless Leg Syndrome

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Fibromyalgia (FM) and sleep dysfunction seem to go hand in hand. In fact, most people who have FM complain of problems associated with sleeping. Sleep problems can include difficulty falling asleep with or without waking up one to multiple times a night. Also, the inability to reach “deep sleep” results in waking up un-restored. People with fibromyalgia frequently state, “… I feel exhausted when I wake up; I have no energy.” They often feel more tired in the morning, and many go back to sleep during the day to ease their fatigue. Another common FM complaint is having great difficulty concentrating during the day, often referred to as, “…fibro fog.” Other sleep disorders such as sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome are also often associated with FM.

Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a neurologic disorder that is characterized by an overwhelming urge to move the legs at rest, thus interfering with sleep. Restless legs syndrome is more common among those who have fibromyalgia. Patients with RLS describe this as an unpleasant sensation in their legs and sometimes their arms or other parts of the body accompanied by the irresistible urge to move the legs in attempt to relieve the sensation. The terms, “itchy” or “pins and needles” or “creepy crawly” are frequently used when describing the sensations and can range from mild to intolerable. Symptoms are typically worse at rest, especially when lying or sitting and frequently results in sleep deprivation and stress. The intensity of the symptoms can vary, frequently worse in the nighttime, better in the morning. RLS may affect up to 10% of the population in the United States, especially women, and can affect both young and old, even young children. The severe cases usually affect the middle-aged or older and account for about 2-3% of the 10% incident rate. The diagnosis is often delayed, sometimes for 10-20 years. Although the cause is not clearly described, genetics seems to play a role given about 50% of those affected have a family member with the condition.

Other conditions often associated with RLS include iron deficiency, Parkinson’s disease, kidney failure, iron deficiency, diabetes and peripheral neuropathy. Treatment applied to these conditions often indirectly helps RLS resulting in sleep quality improvement. Medications such as anti-nausea drugs, antipsychotic drugs, some anti-depressants, and cold/allergy medications that contain antihistamines can worsen symptoms. Pregnancy can also trigger RLS, especially in the last trimester. It commonly takes about 3-4 weeks for the symptoms to quiet down after delivery. Other factors that affect RLS include alcohol intake and sleep deprivation itself. Improving sleep and/or eliminating alcohol can be quite effective treatment strategies. There are no medical tests that confirm the diagnosis of RLS, but blood tests can at least rule out other conditions, and when all the tests are negative, the diagnosis is made based on a patient’s symptoms, family history, medication use, the presence of an interrupted sleep pattern with daytime fatigue, and knowledge about the condition.

Treatment utilizing chiropractic management has been reported to be effective in managing RLS associated symptoms including the use of spinal manipulation, muscle release techniques, exercise training, and at times, physical therapy modalities. Nutritional approaches that emphasize muscle relaxation have also been reportedly helpful.

If you, a friend or family member requires care for FM, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shown by choosing our services!

Fibromyalgia & Sleep

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Last month, we focused on how important sleep is in the management of the fibromyalgia (FM) and the relationship between sleep dysfunction and Restless Leg Syndrome. Now that it’s clear that the sleep and FM pairing is so important, how can we improve sleep quality? As stated last month, FM and sleep dysfunction go hand in hand and is a consistent complaint of the FM patient. The need to establish better “sleep hygiene” has been found to be one of the most important treatment strategies for those suffering from FM. This can help decrease pain, fatigue, and the “fibro fog” that is often described that impairs the ability to concentrate and work efficiently.  Listed below are some sleep strategies that work very well, all you have to do is try them!

  • SLEEP QUANTITY: The advice is to only sleep as much as is needed to feel refreshed and alert the following day. Getting too much sleep does not equate to good quality sleep. In fact, reducing the time in bed seems to improve the quality of sleep, as excessively long periods of time in bed result in fragmented, superficial or shallow sleep and doesn’t allow one to enter the deeper, restoring stages of sleep.
  • KEEP A SLEEP LOG: Document the amount you sleep each night and pay attention to things that may have interfered with that night’s sleep. You will find that reviewing these notes over several weeks will give you strong clues as to the triggers that interfere with your ability to sleep so you can develop strategies to deal effectively with these sleep barriers.
  • BE CONSISTENT: Establishing a regular time to wake up each morning as a consistent routine will help establish and strengthen your circadian rhythms, and a regular arousal time puts you on a consistent sleep cycle and leads to a regular time of sleep onset at night.
  • USE RELAXATION TECHNIQUES: The use of relaxation therapies such as visualization, deep breathing, a gentle massage, and southing background music or sounds are all great ways to boost restful sleep.
  • EXERCISE REGULARLY: This sounds counterintuitive but REALLY WORKS well! The KEY to exercise is to do this at least 3 hours prior to going to bed. Exercise not only “clears your head” but it provides a great way to reduce the accumulation of stress and exerts beneficial effects by promoting better, deeper sleep. Start slowly and gradually increase the duration and intensity of a form of exercise that you enjoy and look forward to doing. Pilates, Yoga, Ti Chi, Qui Gong, water aerobics, walking in the woods, or working out at your favorite gym or health club with some pals are some options.
  • BACKGROUND NOISE: Some FM sufferers really benefit from background “white” noise. Sound machines offer a variety of sounds that can help immensely! Avoiding sudden loud noises like low flying air craft or the slamming of a door or cupboard can disturb sleep quality even if we cannot remember the event the next morning.
  • NO NAPS PLEASE: Avoid a daytime nap; however, if you have to “recharge,” keep the time short (no more than a 15-30 min. “power nap”). Long naps interfere with nighttime sleep.
  • TEMPERATURE: Keep your bedroom cool; warm temperatures interfere with sleep.
  • APPETITE: Consider a light snack rich in carbohydrates if hunger interferes with sleep.
  • NO CAFFEINE: Avoid caffeine or alcohol in the evenings as they both can interfere with sleep quality and the ability to get to sleep.

If you, a friend or family member requires care for FM, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shown by choosing our services!

Fibromyalgia vs. Food

Monday, November 19th, 2012

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a derangement that affects everyone a little differently. Therefore, promoting a one diet approach for every FM patient doesn’t make a lot of sense. However, according to Ginevra Liptan, MD, medical director of the Frida Center for FM in Portland, OR, it is clear that what is included in a diet vs. what is eliminated makes a big difference for many FM patients. It has been reported that 42% of FM patients surveyed indicated their symptoms worsened after eating certain foods. Here are some recommendations about diet to consider:

  1. Pay attention to how food makes YOU feel. Many FM patients have sensitivities to particular foods, but this is highly variable from person to person. Sensitivity to MSG, certain preservatives, eggs, gluten, and dairy are quite common. Keep a daily food journal for at least 2 weeks and write down the foods eaten and any associated symptoms like headaches, indigestion (irritable bowel syndrome irritation – IBS), or fatigue.
  2. Try Eliminating Certain Foods. Many FM patients have irritable bowel symptoms, and using an elimination diet can help determine which foods to cut out. Try it out for no less than 6-8 weeks in order to get the best results. Then, add it back into your diet and pay attention to how it makes you feel. The most commonly eliminated foods are dairy and gluten and the most common improvement is in fatigue reduction and reduced IBS symptoms like bloating and constipation.
  3. If you think you might have food sensitivities or allergies, talk with us.Sometimes it is best to obtain an evaluation from an allergist for food allergy testing. Dietitians can also assist in assuring that you don’t eliminate essential nutrients when foods are eliminated from the diet.
  4. Make it easier to Eat Healthy. Everyone, including the FM sufferer, should try to eat fruits, vegetables, whole grains (if not gluten sensitive), and lean meats or protein. A well balanced diet will give you more energy, which in turn, can improve your overall health. When pain and exhaustion are present, choose healthy foods that do not require a lot of preparation such as buying pre-washed vegetables, or purchase pre-prepared foods like beet salad and quinoa.
  5. Use Food to Help Fight Fatigue. Consume foods in a way that increases energy levels and prevent fatigue. Anecdotally, FM patients have reported that eating small meals frequently vs. restricting themselves to 3 meals a day can keep blood sugar levels more even and prevent the “hypoglycemic lows.” A snack high in protein around 3pm can prevent mid-day fatigue.  Make sure your breakfast includes some protein and whole grains (again, assuming there is no gluten sensitivity). Focus on getting enough sleep and staying active during the day as these can also prevent fatigue during the day.
  6. Check on Your Supplements. Some supplements have significant side effects and can interact with medications. Talk to the prescribing doctor or pharmacist about this. For example, antidepressants and certain supplements can interact.
  7. Focus on Your Overall Well-Being. A multiple approach to managing FM symptoms works better than a single approach. Things like yoga, massage, and deep breathing exercises, as well as routine chiropractic treatments can improve the overall quality of life. Increasing the quality of life is the ultimate goal for managing the FM patient. Going to bed at a consistent time, not eating too late, and exercising regularly are key components.

If you, a friend or family member requires care for FM, we sincerely appreciate the trust and confidence shown by choosing our services!

New Fibromyalgia Program in San Diego Shows Promising Results

Sunday, March 6th, 2011
fibromyalgia treatmentWhat you’re about to discover is a step-by-step guide on how to stop your suffering and literally hand your life back to you. This is regardless of how hard you’ve tried before.  You don’t have to be told that Fibromyalgia is a terrible condition that not only robs you of strength and motivation, but also in severe cases, can even strip you of the will to live.
Some say that if you’ve been suffering from Fibromyalgia, it’s not surprising if the pain and agony that you’re going though makes you want to cry or even wish you would die. At the least, it makes even the strongest minded individual stop and ask why me.
If that describes you, you must want your life back. You must wish you could stop the torment and feel energized and alive again. If you’re like most sufferers, you’ve tried so many things. You’ve taken the medications, you’ve went to doctors, you’ve tried the magic oils, you’ve probably even gotten some type of therapy. You don’t know who or what to believe anymore. It’s even disturbing your quality of life and time with your family. When you finally get a chance to relax and enjoy yourself it attacks. Let’s say you’re out with your spouse, or the kids are with mom, or you have a chance to soak up some time to yourself. Maybe you’d like see a movie, grab dinner, simply have a nice evening out with your loved one. Then it happens. It creeps up and sets in.
Your night is ruined. You can’t enjoy even a waking moment. You go home, get in bed and try to at least to have a good night’s sleep but you end up sleeping poorly. The next day you awake to feeling chronically tired or even depressed. The cycle seems to repeat itself and go on and on.  You just want the pain to stop more than anything else, and you should! You deserve more. You deserve to live your life again. There has to be a way for this horror of a nightmare to stop!
In this article we are going to share how you can make it stop.  But first, here are some facts that you have to know about fibromyalgia. First of all, the diagnosis is difficult. The underlying cause of it is unknown. The frequency, degree and location of pain vary from day to day. Medical treatment is focused on managing the symptoms. Fibromyalgia affects 2% of people in the US.
Fibromyalgia can become a crippling disease. It ruins the lives of millions of people each year. This is because they never spend the time focusing in on the source of the problem. Most of the recent research on Fibromyalgia points to brain stem injury and malfunction as the major cause of Fibromyalgia. Sometimes a simple nerve system evaluation can detect the exact problem.
You must avoid the 3 myths that cause you more pain and suffering and make your situation worse. This is a big problem. Most people who suffer from fibromyalgia have been fed the myths by doctors, authorities, media, even friends. They are told that it’s all in their mind or that they just need to stop stressing so much and calm down.
Here are the three biggest myths about Fibromyalgia. Believing these will never get you the results you want and may make things worse. The first one is hoping that physical activity or exercise will work by itself. Exercise is important, but it sometimes makes the problem worse without first identifying the true cause of the symptoms. The second is hoping the problem will go away by itself. This is ludicrous. Fibromyalgia gets worse as it gets ignored. People that put off the correct treatment can look forward to even more pain and suffering down the road. The third is taking doses and doses of medication to alleviate the pain. This is most dangerous of all the fallacies. Medication or pain killers, and mind altering drugs pump chemicals into your brain to fool it and make it think the problem is gone. All the while, because of mistreatment and neglect the problem gets worse. But that’s the not as bad as the terrible side effects of pain killers and medication. Medication is the worse alternative to healing and eliminating Fibromyalgia. Not only does it make the condition worse, but it also creates additional problems and even dependency on medication.
What if there was a safe, simple way you could become pain free starting today? There is a way. A way you can eliminate your Fibromyalgia and quickly become pain free without drugs, medication, or surgery, and get your life back without losing any more quality time and missing out on the quality of life you deserve.
There are many natural alternatives to eliminate the pain of fibromyalgia. 3 effective techniques are specific nutrition, a fibromyalgia exercise plan, and specialized Fibromyalgia chiropractic care. First of all, nutrition is very important. Generally speaking, every day you should take a good multivitamin, a mega mineral supplement, a B-complex vitamin, an antioxidant supplement, and 5 servings of fruits and vegetables. These are just the basics.
Second, proper exercise that doesn’t make your condition worse is an essential component of any Fibromyalgia treatment program. You need to have a basic fitness program that doesn’t irritate your condition. You need to set realistic goals and start slow and build yourself up. And most important is to keep it simple and not to overdo it.
The last technique and probably the most important is specialized Fibromyalgia chiropractic care. If a vertebra should move out of place, you may have nerve interference that can impair the way your body functions and cause the pain associated with Fibromyalgia. Vertebrae can shift out of place due to trauma, tension, and toxins. It’s important to go to a doctor that will focus on all the causes that may be associated with Fibromyalgia.
To eliminate your Fibromyalgia, you need to get to the source of the problem and eliminate the cause. Once you treat the cause and not just cover up the symptoms, then eliminating Fibromyalgia is easier than you think.

The Holiday Effect On Fibromyalgia

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

Anyone suffering from fibromyalgia knows how painful and depressing life can be.  At New Century Spine Centers in San Diego, fibromyalgia is a common ailment that many people come in for. Many fibromyalgia patients who come in for chiropractic care also know how misunderstood this condition can be. Until you suffer with fibromyalgia, it is difficult to really understand the true effects on a person.

But, with the help of modern research (and a little care and understanding) some doctors are starting to gain more and more knowledge about the causes, diagnosis and treatment. It is not a condition that is completely misunderstood anymore.

For example, in a 558 chronic pain patient study, the American College of Rheumatology found that they could accurately identify which patients had fibromyalgia, at an 88% accuracy level. This supports that fibromyalgia can be accurately diagnosed and may not be “all in your head” as many doctors previously thought.

It was also found that many people can have fibromyalgia with less than the previously required 11 tender points as long as they have widespread pain and many of these symptoms: fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, sleeping problems, chronic headache, jaw (TMJ) pain, memory problems, muscle pain, morning stiffness, menstrual cramping, numbness and tingling, dizziness, skin and chemical sensitivities.

Stress has long been theorized to be a major factor in fibromyalgia. And starting a new year and the upcoming holidays that come along with it is one of the most stressful times of the year.

Like all doctors’ offices, care may vary from office to office. So if you are looking for a Chiropractor who offers short term, affordable fibromyalgia care, or if you have questions, call New Century Chiropractic in San Diego. The chiropractors at New Century Spine Centers can help you get your life back on track and eliminate the pain and suffering associated with fibromyalgia. You can be seen immediately with no obligation to extensive treatment plans.