As many of us fibromites know, food can help with healing, or it can be our kryptonite. Each person with fibromyalgia may have different sensitivities or allergies to a variety of different foods, but may not know it until the proper testing is done. Sometimes though, testing doesn’t NEED to be done as your own body will tell you whether or not it can handle the food you ate.
Several years ago, I was put on a diet due to the fact that I had something called SIBO (Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth). Sounds gross, right? Well, everyone has bacteria in the intestines to help with digestion but because I was eating a significant amount of carbs and processed sugar, “bad” bacteria was growing, causing symptoms similar to and intensifying my fibromyalgia symptoms. After going on a major diet change including: low carb, high fat, very little dairy, few fruits, selected vegetables, gluten free, you get the idea. For this kosher picky vegetarian, it was HARD! But, after the withdrawal symptoms were over, I began to feel GOOD. My pain decreased, my fog decreased, and most of my fibro symptoms decreased. It felt like a miracle! But, I did this diet for three months, my SIBO went away, and my naturopath (who diagnosed the SIBO) stated that it was gone. Noticing that I was feeling better, I took it upon myself to remain gluten free and processed sugar free and since then, my fibro symptoms are much better managed than they were before my SIBO diagnosis.
But, why do I bring this long-ish story up? Because even in the non-fibro world, going gluten free and processed sugar free has become a “thing.” It’s become popular and people notice that without eating the processed junk, eating a whole foods (and I don’t mean the store) diet, people had more energy, were able to focus better, and much more. Also, studies have shown that there is a high incidence of SIBO in people with fibromyalgia They will often go undiagnosed as many Western doctors do not even know what it is. As I stated before, I was diagnosed by my naturopath.
Many of the clients that I have seen have either also been on a gluten free, refined sugar free diet, or had a list of food allergies/sensitivities that made going on the above diet make the most sense. As their advisor, I have been able to successfully transition many of my clients to food plans that work well with their health concerns. And after many weeks on said food plan, many reported that they noticed a decrease in their fibro symptoms. So, do you have to change what you eat in order to feel better? Dr. Ginevra Liptan (a doctor who treats fibromyalgia while living with fibromyalgia) made the following statement in an article on WebMd, that discussed fibromyalgia and diet. She noted “There aren't many good studies that have looked at how diet can affect fibromyalgia symptoms. But I think we can gather a lot from anecdotal evidence -- from what patients tell us," says Ginevra Liptan, MD, medical director of the Frida Center for Fibromyalgia in Portland, Ore., and author of Figuring Out Fibromyalgia: Current Science and the Most Effective Treatments.” Basically, trust your gut.
Are you struggling with digestive issues alongside your fibromyalgia? Well, you’re not alone. IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), SIBO, GERD (Gastroesophageal reflux disease) are all common. Interested in getting some help to address these concerns? Well, over the counter medications like Prilosec can help, but most likely what you’ll need to do is change your diet. This is something that a Fibromyalgia Coach/Advisor can help you with. As I said before, I’ve worked with many clients on these issues and they have been pleased with their results. Why not set up a free consultation and we can talk about what we can do to help your fibromyalgia and digestive concerns. You can contact me here or schedule a consultation directly here. I look forward to hearing you soon! In the meantime, find that food that nourishes your body and your soul. It’s out there, I promise. =)
I’m Kate Straus and I’m a Certified Fibromyalgia Advisor. I help Jewish women feel confident in their ability to practice their faith while navigating the ups and downs of fibromyalgia. I’m using the disease that at one time knocked me down, to help support others live life to their fullest.