Struggling with fibromyalgia? This widespread condition causes fatigue, joint pain, memory problems, and sleep disorders. It is estimated that nearly 10 million Americans and up to six percent of people worldwide suffer from this debilitating disease. Most patients are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50 years, and experience severe pain throughout their body.
Researchers believe that fibromyalgia has genetic causes. However, its exact causes are unknown. Treatment involves medications, lifestyle changes, exercise, and stress-reduction measures. Don’t let this disease take over your life! Follow these five steps to reduce fibromyalgia naturally:
Step 1: Exercise Regularly
Most people suffering from fibromyalgia experience restless leg syndrome, muscle pain, and stiffness. Regular exercise may help relieve these symptoms and improve quality of life. It also wards off the fatigue caused by this disease, lifting your mood. A well-planned workout program can stimulate circulation, boost your energy, and ease joint pain.
If you’re a newbie, start with baby steps and try different activities. Cycling, hiking, walking, swimming, pilates, yoga, and strength training are particularly beneficial. Just make sure you don’t go overboard; too much exercise can worsen your symptoms, leaving you fatigued and low on energy.
Step 2: Try Alternative Therapies
Fibromyalgia alters the way your brain processes pain signals. This is why those who suffer from this disease report greater pain than healthy individuals do. Certain therapies, such as acupuncture, massage, chiropractic manipulation, ice therapy, and physical therapy, can relieve pain and discomfort. Some also improve mobility and keep your joints flexible. Vigorous massage may help ease deep muscle pain within minutes, so you should give it a try. Another good option is acupuncture. According to a study, fibromyalgia suffers who used this therapy benefited from pain relief for over two years compared to those who receive other treatments.
Step 3: Include Yoga in Your Daily Routine
A clinical trial conducted in 2010 has found that fibromyalgia patients who took yoga classes reported improved mood, greater energy, and less pain. Their exercise program included meditation, deep breathing, and gentle poses as well as social interaction. Other studies indicate that yoga increases muscle strength and range of motion, reduces the perception of pain, and boosts serotonin levels in the brain. Most poses can be adjusted to any fitness level, and requires no equipment. If you can’t sign up for classes, practice yoga at home.
Step 4: Increase Your Vitamin D Intake
Evidence shows that vitamin D improves fibromyalgia syndrome and wards off fatigue. Researchers have also discovered that most fibromyalgia patients dealing with chronic pain have low levels of vitamin D in the bloodstream. Also known as the sunshine vitamin, this nutrient regulates calcium and phosphate levels in your body, assists in bone growth, and modulates cell growth. It also protects against inflammation and boosts neuromuscular function. To get more vitamin D in your diet, eat fatty fish, eggs, cheese, organ meat, and fortified orange juice. Dietary supplements are a great choice as well.
Step 5: Get Adequate Rest
Chronic fatigue is one of the primary symptoms of fibromyalgia. Sleep deprivation only makes things worse. Additionally, most suffers are struggling with insomnia. To reduce fatigue, create a bedtime routine and get proper rest. Go to sleep and wake up at the same time daily, relax before bedtime, and avoid caffeine, cigarettes, alcohol, and other stimulants.