These people seem to have a pain perception problem. Generally they do not sleep well, feel fatigued upon waking, have low energy, can not tolerate heavy exercise and have a lowered pain threshold. There is often an associated clinical depression or anxiety disorder. Symptoms often first begin after a period of emotional stress or trauma and studies have shown that these people have decreased levels of serotonin.
Pseudo fibromyalgia describes people who have been misdiagnosed as having fibromyalgia when they have another cause for their widespread pain. Pseudo fibromyalgia has been broken down into three categories: organic diseases, functional disorders and musculoskeletal disorders.
Many other diseases such as hypothyroidism, inflammatory arthritis, anemia, Lyme disease, auto-immune disorders, multiple sclerosis and cancer can cause widespread pain. A diagnosis of fibromyalgia should only be given after these other causes of pain have been excluded. Many conditions in this category are also associated with fatigue, especially hypothyroidism.
Functional disorders are not true pathological conditions or diseases. These are things such as vitamin and mineral deficiencies, intestinal dysbiosis, dehydration and subtle hormonal imbalances. What these functional disorders have in common is that they can cause low energy and widespread pain.
The tender points of classic fibromyalgia are different than the trigger points from sore or overused muscles. Classic fibromyalgia is not a disorder of the muscles, but is a pain perception disorder. Pain from problems such as sore muscles, inter-vertebral disks, joints, herniated disks, or nerve impingement is not fibromyalgia.
There are many symptoms associated with fibromyalgia, but labeling these as “symptoms of fibromyalgia” or “fibromyalgia syndrome,” does nothing to explain their causes and is also very confusing.
Is fibromyalgia widespread pain and tenderness in 11 of 18 tender points, or is it a myriad of other associated symptoms?
Classifying fibromyalgia into different groups depending on cause is very helpful. Once this is done treatment can be focused on fixing the cause of fibromyalgia, instead of just suppressing the symptoms with drugs.
The following recommendations are for Classic Fibromyalgia. For Pseudo Fibromyalgia click here.
• Begin a mild exercise program and very gradually increase it in activity and intensity over time.
• Prioritize good, restorative sleep habits:
a. Avoid drinking excess fluids before bed.
b. Avoid caffeine, alcohol and large meals 4 hours before bed.
c. Try not to nap in the afternoon.
d. Avoid having lights from computers, TV and cell phones in the bedroom during sleeping hours.
e. Try to go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time each morning.
• Spend time around supportive friends and family.
• Manage chronic pain through stress reduction techniques such as biofeedback, massage therapy, prayer and meditation, deep breathing exercises, and more.
• Consider alternative therapies such as acupuncture, chiropractic, herbal therapies and flotation therapy or water exercises.
• Avoid stress and extra obligations.
Dietary Tips and Caveats:
• Make organic fruits and vegetables the diet’s foundation for the antioxidant support they provide against inflammation.
• Focus on high amounts of fiber from flaxseed meal or ground chia seeds and from complex, unrefined carbohydrates such as the whole grains quinoa and brown or black rice.
• Emphasize omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, mackerel, trout, herring, sardines) and omega-9 fats (olive oil, olives, almonds, hazelnuts, avocados, macadamia oil and coconut oil) to help control inflammation.
• Choose lean, clean, quality protein at each meal such as chicken breast, turkey breast, lean beef, fish (especially salmon and sardines), eggs and whey protein to fuel muscles with energy; include Whey Cool™, PaleoMeal® or PaleoMeal® DF to address protein needs; avoid dairy if it causes flare-ups.
• Avoid nightshades such as eggplant, tomatoes, potatoes, peppers and tobacco.
• Drink at least 64 ounces of filtered or non-chlorinated water every day. In addition, drink 2-3 cups of naturally decaffeinated green tea daily and/or up to 2 cups of dandelion tea.
• Limit caffeine and other potentially neurotoxic compounds like aspartame, nitrates and MSG.
• Use herbs and spices high in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties such as turmeric, rosemary, ginger and basil.
• Stay well hydrated.
5 HTP Supreme™ 1 capsule 3 times per day
Magnesium Malate 1 capsule 3 times per day
Mito-PQQ™ 1-2 capsules per day
Q-Evail™ 200 1 softgel per day
NeuroCalm™ 2 caps one to two times per day
Optional, for additional support
Mitochondrial NRG™ 2 capsules twice per day with meals
SAMe 1-2 capsules per day
OmegAvail™ TG1000 1 softgel per day
MSM Powder 1 heaping tsp twice per day
The above protocol is designed as a general approach for dealing with the most common issues involved in classic fibromyalgia. If you do not see results after several weeks you should contact us for a personal evaluation. The above recommended supplements can be acquired by clicking here.