Thursday 3 September 2015

4 nutrients that can help relieve fibromyalgia symptoms

Hippocrates once stated “let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”; a statement which has not lost its wisdom over the years. 
While prescription medications are available to moderate Fibromyalgia symptoms such as mood imbalances, anxiety, sleep disturbances, chronic pain, and inflammation; increasing certain nutrients in your everyday diet is a more holistic approach which can have a significant impact in alleviating these symptoms and improving quality of life.

Essential Magnesium

Magnesium is one particular mineral that is absolutely essential to fibromyalgia sufferers, as it is a systemic relaxant which can naturally reduce cramping, twitching, tingling, calm anxiety, and support better quality sleep. 
This nutrient can make a world of difference in alleviating pain and encouraging deeper, more restful sleep. Excellent sources of dietary magnesium include nuts, seeds (especially pumpkin), legumes (mainly black eyed peas and tempeh), dark green leafy vegetables, avocados, dark chocolate, and whole unrefined grains.
Stress initiates adrenaline and cortisol release which can be beneficial for short-term energy and focus. However, when this process is over utilized, the stress cycle can impede the body’s natural healing, digestion, absorption of nutrients, and sleep quality

B vitamins for stress

B vitamins assist the body in handling stress – physical, mental, or environmental/chemical. 
Deficiencies in B vitamins can occur relatively quickly since they are used in greater quantity while under stress, so to ensure the body has the tools it needs higher B vitamin intake may be required. Some B vitamins can be produced in the digestive tract with the assistance of beneficial bacteria, so increasing fermented foods in your diet may help bolster your numbers. Additionally, natural sources of B vitamins include organ meats, nutritional yeast, the germ and bran of whole unrefined grains, legumes, nuts and seeds, and dark leafy greens such as collards and spinach. Consuming refined flour or sugar, coffee, and alcohol in excess can all deplete B vitamin levels.

Fighting oxidative stress

Antioxidants combat free radical damage which preserves the lifespan and health of every cell in your body. Oxidative stress affects body tissues as well as stress response – which negatively impacts digestion, sleep, and energy levels. 
Include plenty of fresh produce, especially brightly colored vegetables and fruits, including berries, peppers, and dark green vegetables. Keep as much as you can either raw or lightly cooked since heat reduces the antioxidant potential of your ingredients.

Reducing inflammation

Healthy fats (such as omega 3s) counteract inflammation and moderate blood sugar for more stable energy levels and improved mood and sleep. Fat helps slow glucose absorption from carbohydrates keeping blood sugar levels more stable. The benefits of balanced blood sugar levels are improved sleep quality, reduced inflammation, moderated anxiety, and calm mood and energy levels. Increase healthy fats in your diet by eating more Omega 3-rich fish such as trout, mackerel, cod, halibut, salmon, and sardines. Try cooking with coconut, avocado, or grapeseed oil, which are protected from breaking down under medium to high heat by naturally occurring antioxidants. Add hemp, camelina, and flax oils to salads, smoothies, dressings, and dips.

While these tips are a great start, assessing your current dietary practices with a professional can help assess whether nutritional factors may be contributing to your symptoms.

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”.

If you want to understand more about your fibromyalgia you can book a  complementary no-obligation assessment with one of our experienced health coaches who can answer your questions. Call 613 230-0998, book online, or email today!

About the Author

Jessica is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist with a passion for helping people live happier, healthier, more vibrant lives through nutrition and lifestyle coaching. 

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