Have you been diagnosed with fibromyalgia? Or maybe you haven’t but you think you might be a victim of it? It’s estimated that fibromyalgia affects about 10 million people in the U.S. alone.
What is this disease?
Fibromyalgia is characterized by chronic pain, fatigue, sleep disturbances and cognitive impairment (or what’s more commonly referred to as “brain fog”). Other symptoms of fibromyalgia can include eventual depression and anxiety (chronic pain = depression and depression = more pain, leading to a vicious cycle), stomach issues and sensitivity to medications. Fibromyalgia is a tricky disease and one doctors still don’t know a lot about (including how to treat it). Often traditional medicine treats the symptoms but not the underlying causes, which helps no one. Read on to find out what some of these underlying causes may actually be.
- Gluten Intolerance – People often think an intolerance to gluten merely results in issues of a digestive nature but more likely an intolerance can show itself with symptoms that are instead neurological, such as pain, cognitive impairment, sleep disturbances, behavioral issues, fatigue and depression.
- Candida Overgrowth – Candida is a yeast that lives in your intestines in trace amounts. When overproduced, it breaks down the walls and penetrates the bloodstream, releasing toxic byproducts into your body and causing a host of unpleasant symptoms such as brain fog, fatigue, digestive issues and pain.
- Vitamin Deficiencies – Magnesium, vitamin D and B12 deficiency are the most common vitamin deficiencies amongst those with fibromyalgia.
- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) and Leaky gut – Did you know that there are more bacteria in and on us than there are of our own cells? When these bacteria get out of whack, we can lose our ability to digest and absorb nutrients. SIBO and leaky gut can lead gluten and other food intolerances.
- Mycotoxins – Mycotoxins are very toxic substances produced by molds.
- Mercury Toxicity – Mercury is toxic to our bodies (anyone’s) and can be one piece of the puzzle for those with fibromyalgia.
- Adrenal Fatigue – Adrenal fatigue is a result of chronic stress, which is typically caused by food intolerances, Candida, mercury toxicity, vitamin deficiencies or mycotoxins. Add in chronic pain, which is also a stressor to the adrenal glands, and you’ve got a double whammy.
- Glutathione deficiency – Glutathione is the most critical part of our body’s detoxification system. It gets recycled in our body —unless our toxic burden gets too high, or we lack GSTM1 and GSTP1, the enzymes needed to recycle and produce glutathione.
There is no single root cause for fibromyalgia but instead many related ones. You don’t need to suffer needlessly or mask symptoms with pain medication. There are a variety of other things you can try as well, from lifestyle changes to vitamins and supplements. And remember that they’re doing new research on fibromyalgia every day to try to find an actual cure!
For recommendations on holistic strategies and essential nutrients, please contact us.