Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Stuff I found that works for me

Today, I am writing about what I have found that works for me.
Some things I found out on my own, some things I found through research, some things were recommended to me. All of it may, or may not, work for you.

(all my supplements are from health food stores unless otherwise noted)
Daily multi
Omega 3, 6, 9 combo
cal-mag with D (I'm D deficient, as well as mineral deficient)
Potassium (I retain water)
Aller-Max from Country Life-helps with seasonal allergies
Zyflamend-this is an herb combo for joint function and circulation
Liver detox herbs (I have an over-taxed liver-maybe from 12 years of Ibuprofen?)
Magnesium Malate-read why the malate form is best, here

Cymbalta-30 mg
In addition to fibromyalgia, I have some depression and anxiety (who wouldn't, with all this pain, right?) Cymbalta is a SNRI, and helps to even me out. Also, it helps block much of my pain, at least the daily stuff. I know many of you have seen the commercials, and I had some of the yuckier symptoms the first couple weeks. I stuck it out, and many went away.  I was left with some excessive yawning, constant thirst (so I carry water and drink a lot, which is good anyway) and decreased appetite (can I get a double dose!!!). All in all, the irritations are minor. 

Foods I avoid
I did an elimination diet, and removed dairy and gluten from my diet. Both caused severe flare-ups for me. Dairy was not as bad as gluten, the gluten flare-up lasted for 5 days.  No thank you. Also, after dairy caused pain for me, I Googled "Dairy and joint pain", it was like I hit the lottery-TONS of references on Google scholar too.
MSG-many of the artificial junk in food is associated with joint problems, or can exacerbate pain, so I have cleaned up my diet accordingly.

Foods I have added
Green tea-lots of research about green tea helping with the sleep/wake cycle, raising dopamine levels, and reducing tremors-all things us fibros can have in spades
Organics-I first switched to organic on the stuff they say is the most important-strawberries, celery, etc. Then, slowly, many other items. I would venture to say that over half of the food in my home is now organic.  I got to the point that I didn't want to expose myself to any more crap if I could help it.

Life changes
I do less.  This, truly, was the hardest.  And, I have a very amazing husband, and wonderful staff, that constantly check with me.
I am starting to meditate-I will keep you posted
I have worked on my breathing-yoga breaths, Princess calls them. In deeply through the nose, exhale through the mouth.  The slower, the better.  This breathing helped me through my 4 shots in my head last week when I needed stitches.
Yoga-this covers the relaxation, as well as the exercise part. Exercise is VERY IMPORTANT. I know, I know, it hurts.  Start slow.  5 minute walks soon become 10 minute walks. Do what YOU can.
Other exercise-I do weight training, treadmill, and elliptical. I change it up, and it's helping with weight loss as well as energy
Weight Loss-since diagnosis, I have lost 24 pounds (4 months' time).  I have always been a Weight Watcher (okay, off and on, mostly off, but I GET the program, and like it). This is helping with the support aspect too. Much of what the meetings say, my therapist reiterates. But for less.
Acupuncture-I have GREAT insurance. I am VERY lucky.  I get acupuncture for a co-pay. And, my acupuncturist is holistic, works on everything I have going on.
Therapy-this was the one area my doctors all insisted upon. Once I got over feeling crappy for their vehemence that I needed a therapist, I found a great one, who is big into mindfulness, and is helping me to slow down, and get used to my new situations as they arise.
I work less-this may not be an option, but keep looking, try to find a way to reduce some of what you do-just keep the things that bring you the most joy

I will end for now-I hope this gave a few people something new to try, or discuss with your physician.

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