"Me vs. Fibromyalgia" is an in-depth, one-of-a-kind series designed to give readers and warriors affected by Fibromyalgia a comprehensive look into the facts of the disease and the story of a woman who wouldn't take no for an answer. I've chronicled eight years of experience with Fibro including chronic pain, low energy, doctors, relationships and more, and hope to offer answers and support to those who seek them.
Through eight years of pain causing me to want to rip my face off most of the time, sometimes unable to walk because my feet feel like someone put them into cement blocks, lit them on fire and kept hitting them with a hammer, not to mention the rest of my body (all of it) throbbing, aching, burning and feeling like I ran a marathon EVERY day, I've realized that it's not one size fits all for Fibromyalgia pain management.
Dr. K, my rheumatologist, still remains my secret sauce but he has also taught me that with Fibro, we need to throw the whole pot of spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks. So when I ran out of meat sauce and noodles, it got me thinking...
If I wanted huge results, I had to make a huge change.
I realized I had to build a better machine... a better body. With Fibro, our bodies already work overtime to fight pain and fatigue 24/7, what if I could conserve some energy by feeding my machine-body a diet that was better for me and took less energy to digest?
So one year ago, when my husband brought up becoming vegan (even though my body involuntarily recoiled in horror), I knew it would be a blessing to my overall health. Full disclosure: The thought of going full vegan was daunting. So, I'm easy with myself. I listen to my body, and if I really want a burger, I'll have one. I'm vegan about 90% of the time and it has made such a difference with my Fibro. After just three weeks, here's what happened:
- I lost those famous "last five pounds" that are so stubborn and hard to lose
- My cholesterol dropped 30 points
- Swelling went down throughout my body, especially my face
- Rashes caused by Fibro became less visible AND less itchy
- My energy increased substantially
On bad flare days I still eat whatever I can stomach (we call it survival mode), vegan or not. And because I travel with my job, strictly vegan isn't readily available at all times. Besides, an occasional glazed donut never hurt anyone.
So, the medicine regiment continues and so do the B12 and vitamin D shots/prescriptions, but by adding in a mostly vegan diet, I took my Fibro management to the next level. Dr. K was happy we took such a big step and my pain levels are no longer at a 9 or 10, more like a 7 or 8- I'll take it!
I'm so interested to hear if you have tried anything like this, or any other big changes in your habits to conquer Fibro. Share them with us in the conversation below!
Coming up: Me vs. Fibromyalgia: Part 7-- Interview with Marshall Field (...THE Marshall Field)
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. All information presented should be regarded as friendly advice and opinions based on my own experience and research. I am not making an attempt to prescribe any medical treatment and the information contained in this blog is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a doctor or qualified health practitioner.
Click here to read my last post, 5 Ways to Say Thank You to Your Partner (That Won't Hurt a Bit)