|Amino Acid / Protein|| Creatine Monohydrate
| ||The use of creatine monohydrate improved body pain, strength, and physical fibromyalgia impact scores in a study of 19 patients with fibromyalgia. There was no improvement in fatigue or total fibromyalgia impact scores. Patients were given 20gm per day for 5 days which was reduced to 5gm per day thereafter. [European Congress of Rheumatology, June12-15, 2002, Stockholm, Sweden]|
Colostrum / Transfer Factor
| ||Many CFS and Fibromyalgia (FM) patients have reported great benefit with the use of transfer factors. In one small study of FM, Natural Killer (NK) cell activity increased by 169%, and patients reported feeling much better. [Rob Robertson, M.D. 2066 South 950 East, Provo, UT 84606 ]|
| ||Oral administration of thymic protein A was associated with normalization of immune function and improvement in clinical symptoms in a pilot study of 23 patients with CFIDS. [J Nutr Environ Med 2001;11(4): pp.241-247]|
Ginseng, Korean - Chinese / Asian (Panax ginseng)
| ||Adaptogenic herbs like Asian ginseng may be useful for people with chronic fatigue syndrome. This may be because these herbs are thought to have an immuno-modulating effect and also help support the normal function of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, the hormonal stress system of the body. [Quart Rev Natural Med 1996;Summer: pp.95-7]|
While studies have been conflicting regarding Korean ginseng use and athletic performance, there are many people struggling with fatigue who have reported a renewal of energy after only a few days use.
| ||Many CFIDS patients feel more energetic after taking mushroom formulas. Medicinal mushrooms may have anti-viral effects as well.|
| ||ViaViente has helped some people resolve fibromyalgia pain and improve their energy levels.|
Chlorella / Algae Products
| ||Fifty-five subjects with fibromyalgia, 33 with hypertension, and 9 with ulcerative colitis consumed 10gm of pure chlorella in tablet form and 100mL of a liquid containing an extract of chlorella each day for 2 or 3 months. Daily dietary supplementation with chlorella was seen to reduce high blood pressure, lower serum cholesterol levels, accelerate wound healing and enhance immune functions. Researchers concluded that the potential of chlorella to relieve symptoms, improve quality of life, and normalize body functions in patients with fibromyalgia, hypertension, or ulcerative colitis suggests that larger, more comprehensive clinical trials of chlorella are warranted. [Altern Ther Health Med. 2001 May-Jun; 7(3): pp.79-91. Review]|
Dental Metal Removal
| ||Hypersensitivity to dental metals and nickel is frequent in patients with CFS and MCS-like syndromes. Ongoing metal-induced inflammation can be present in the oral cavity and/or in any other place of metal deposition. Metal-driven chronic inflammation may affect the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA-axis) and trigger a myriad of non-specific symptoms characterizing CFS, MCS and other related diseases. The removal of metallic restorations can reduce lymphocyte sensitization and improve the health of patients. [Neuroendocrinology Letters, 20: pp.289-298, 1999]|
Raw Food Diet
| ||In one study, the effect of a strict, low-salt, uncooked vegan diet rich in lactobacteria in 18 fibromyalgia patients both during and after a 3-month intervention period was evaluated. 15 patients continued their omnivorous diet as controls. The results revealed significant improvements in pain reduction, joint stiffness, quality of sleep, and overall scoring in all 3 questionnaires which were used. The majority of patients were overweight to some extent at the beginning of the study and shifting to a vegan food caused a significant reduction in body mass index. Total serum cholesterol showed a statistically significant lowering and urinary sodium dropped to 1/3 of the beginning value indicating good diet compliance. It can be concluded that a raw vegan diet has beneficial effects on fibromyalgia symptoms at least in the short run. [Scand J Rheumatol 2000;29(5): pp.308-13]|
In another study, thirty people participated in a dietary intervention using a mostly raw, pure vegetarian diet. The diet consisted of raw fruits, salads, carrot juice, tubers, grain products, nuts, seeds, and a dehydrated barley grass juice product. 19 of 30 subjects were classified as responders, with significant improvement on all measured outcomes, compared to no improvement among non-responders. This dietary intervention shows that many fibromyalgia subjects can be helped by a mostly raw vegetarian diet. [BMC Complement Altern Med 2001;1(1): p.7]
| ||See the link between Chronic Fatigue / Fibromyalgia and Raw Food Diet.|
Artificial Sweetener Avoidance
| ||According to researchers and physicians studying the adverse effects of aspartame, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia among other conditions can be triggered or worsened by ingesting aspartame.|
| ||If you suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome you may well find that your symptoms are significantly reduced if you regularly consume dark chocolate - that means chocolate with a high cocoa content and without any milk in it. A pilot study carried out on patients with chronic fatigue syndrome found that their symptoms were alleviated when they consumed dark chocolate, much more so than when they consumed milk chocolate that had brown dye added to it.|
According to the scientists from Hull York Medical School (2007) who carried out the pilot study, it is possible the dark chocolate is boosting levels of serotonin, a brain chemical. They also stressed that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) patients should consume moderate amounts of chocolate.
Team leader, Prof. Steve Atkin, said that a patient had commented to him that she felt much better after eating dark chocolate with a high cocoa content. She had mentioned that her habit had been to consume milk chocolate, which did nothing for her. This comment got him interested in high cocoa (dark) chocolate, which led to the pilot study.
Prof. Atkin and team carried out a trial with ten patients. Half of them received 45 grams per day of high cocoa content dark chocolate while the other half received 45 grams per day of milk chocolate which had been dyed to look like the other one. This went on for two months. Then they all had a month without any chocolate. Then another two months, eating the other type of chocolate.
It became clear to the researchers that those consuming the high cocoa content dark chocolate were experiencing a significant alleviation of their chronic fatigue symptoms. Two of the patients, who had been off work for six months, managed to get back to work.
Prof. Atkins explained that polyphenols are present in large quantities in dark chocolate. Polyphenols have been linked to reductions in blood pressure, as well as other health advantages. Atkins and team believe the polyphenols are having an impact on levels of serotonin in the brain.
The researchers stressed that none of the trial participants put on any weight during the pilot study. They added that patients with chronic fatigue syndrome may derive benefit from consuming small quantities of high cocoa content dark chocolate each day.
Sugars Avoidance / Reduction
| ||Do not consume any sweets, alcohol, or caffeine for 3 to 6 months, and then limit them to moderate amounts. Expect withdrawal symptoms during the first week.|
| ||May be an effective aid in the destruction of lipid-enveloped viruses, such as HIV, HHV-6 (strains A and B), EBV, CMV, and herpes.|
| ||Fasting is reported to help in cases of fibromyalgia, but probably not chronic fatigue syndrome.|
| ||Diagnosis and treatment of CFS and FN are combined in the use of the decongestant guaifenesin (often called "guai" by users). Dr. St. Amand in his book What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Fibromyalgia gives an excellent presentation on the subject with full details of guai use. He does not distinguish between Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, or Candida, using guai for them all. This protocol requires the careful avoidance of all salicylates and a hypoglycemic diet if low blood sugar is a factor. There are extensive web sites on its use.|
| ||GHB, as expected, has been reported to help decrease pain and improve sleep in fibromyalgia patients.|
LDN - Low Dose Naltrexone
| ||According to Dr. Bahari, people with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome have had marked improvement using LDN, suggesting that these entities probably have an important autoimmune dynamic as well. Many have reported improvement - some noticing an immediate difference and others only after a prolonged period of use.|
Conventional Drugs / Information
| ||If prescriptions medications are needed to maximize sleep, Ambien, Desyrel, and Klonopin are more helpful than other sleep medications when CFS / Fibromyalgia is present.|
Plant Sterols / Sterolins (Phytosterols)
| ||Although the exact cause is unknown, people with CFS show several immune system abnormalities, which may include:|
Plant sterols and sterolins “modulate” or balance the immune system and have been shown to:
- Low DHEA levels (DHEA is our “anti-aging” hormone)
- A decrease in the activity of Natural Killer cells
- Reactivation of viruses that were previously dormant or “asleep”
- An increased production of auto-antibodies (these attack body tissues)
The goal for people with fibromyalgia (FM) is to balance their immune system and thus reduce an overproduction of inflammatory immune factors (IL-6), which can cause pain and swelling in the joints and muscles. Decreasing inflammatory immune factors can possibly help in reducing the widespread muscle pain associated with FM.
- Normalize DHEA levels by balancing DHEA/cortisol levels
- Increase the activity of Natural Killer cells
- Increase interferon so the body is better able to recognize viruses and dispose of them
- Decrease the auto-antibody production
| ||Testimonies such as this one support the recommendation of trying a glyconutrient product.|
"I have CFS in addition to the allergies, and for that I rate them very highly - a 9 or so for effectiveness (one of the best, indeed one of the only products I have found that provide a noticeable increase in my stamina). In fact they work so well at boosting energy that I often find my sleep is affected if I take one at lunch, which is why I usually just take 1 at breakfast. But for allergies I'd have to say they've been a disappointment."
Rye Grass Extract
| ||Oralmat has been used successfully in some cases of chronic fatigue.|
| ||A comparison of 50 subjects with fibromyalgia found those who underwent an exercise program for 30 minutes per day, 3 day a week, experienced an improvement in mood and function and a reduction in pain compared with controls. [Arthriti Care Res December 2001;45(6): pp.519-529]|
COBAT / Taurox SB
| ||It is possible that many of the benefits of growth hormone use in CFS / Fibromyalgia can also be achieved by simply optimizing DHEA levels.|
Test Thyroid Function
Test Adrenal Function
Test for DHEA
Tests, General Diagnostic
| ||Testing for urinary growth hormone levels could be helpful, as this important hormone is often low in those with CFS / fibromyalgia.|
Test Essential Fatty Acid Profile
MSM (Methyl Sulfonyl Methane)
| ||According to Dr. Stanley Jacobs, MD, MSM can be helpful in most musculoskeletal pain and inflammation conditions, including fibromyalgia.|
| ||Low iodine may also contribute to fatigue and CFS. A study showed that those with low body temperature and fatigue felt better on Iodine 1,500 mcg a day - even though their temperature did not rise with treatment. It is reasonable for those with chronic fatigue, CFS and fibromyalgia to try added iodine (Iodoral) for 3 months to see if it helps. Dr Jacob Teitelbaum MD.|
Lithium (low dose)
| ||One small study examined three women suffering from fibromyalgia, none of whom had responded to conventional treatment. When researchers added lithium (lithium carbonate 300mg two to four times daily) to the women's current treatment, all three noticed a marked reduction in their symptoms of pain and stiffness. Laboratory testing in these patients showed no evidence of lithium toxicity to the thyroid or kidneys.|
| ||Fatigue is sometimes reduced with magnesium (and potassium) supplementation. The many enzyme systems that require magnesium help restore normal energy levels. Treat any magnesium deficiency preferably with magnesium malate. Sometimes magnesium by injection or IV is used.|
Increased Salt Consumption
| ||Many CFIDS/FMS patients may be low in vasopressin. The simplest treatment for a low vasopressin level is to use plenty of salt and drink plenty of water.|
| ||The Maker's Diet by Dr. Jordan Rubin, NMD.|
TMG (Tri-methyl-glycine) / SAMe
| ||DMAE increases the body's release of energy.|
Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)
Oxygen / Oxidative Therapies
Ozone / Oxidative Therapy
| ||Feb. 2008. REUTERS reports that European researchers have found that swimming can significantly ease the debilitating pain of fibromyalgia. According to the report, researchers studied 33 women, having one group exercise in warm water for more than an hour three times a week for eight months while the others did no aquatic training.|
Narcis Gusi at the University of Extremadura in Spain and Pablo Tomas-Carus of the University of Evora in Portugal, who conducted the study, said that the women who swam said the workouts helped ease their pain and they reported an improved quality of life.
"The addition of an aquatic exercise program to the usual care for fibromyalgia in women is cost-effective in terms of both health care costs and societal costs," they wrote in the journal Arthritis Research & Therapy.
Calming / Stretching Exercises
| ||Studies from Texas Tech University found that the yoga postures helped increase circulation to the limbs and decreased physically related anxiety. FMS sufferers frequently complain about decreased energy, but the Tech subjects reported that the yoga exercises actually increased energy levels.|
| ||A study of people with fibromyalgia done by the Touch Research Institute at the University of Miami School of Medicine found that those who got 30 minutes of massage twice a week for 5 weeks had less anxiety, depression and lower levels of stress hormones. Eventually they reported less pain, stiffness, fatigue, and improved sleep.|
Craniosacral Therapy (CST)
Visualization / Relaxation Techniques
| ||(2009) A study by UCLA psychologists suggests that just the thought of a loved one reduces pain, underscoring the importance of social relationships and staying socially connected.|
The study, which asked whether simply looking at a photograph of your significant other can reduce pain, involved 25 women, mostly UCLA students, who had boyfriends with whom they had been in a good relationship for more than six months.
The women received moderately painful heat stimuli to their forearms while they went through a number of different conditions. In one set of conditions, they viewed photographs of their boyfriend, a stranger and a chair.
"When the women were just looking at pictures of their partner, they actually reported less pain to the heat stimuli than when they were looking at pictures of an object or pictures of a stranger," said study co-author Naomi Eisenberger, assistant professor of psychology and director of UCLA's Social and Affective Neuroscience Laboratory. "Thus, the mere reminder of one's partner through a simple photograph was capable of reducing pain."
"This changes our notion of how social support influences people," she added. "Typically, we think that in order for social support to make us feel good, it has to be the kind of support that is very responsive to our emotional needs. Here, however, we are seeing that just a photo of one's significant other can have the same effect."
In another set of conditions, each woman held the hand of her boyfriend, the hand of a male stranger and a squeeze ball. The study found that when women were holding their boyfriends' hands, they reported less physical pain than when they were holding a stranger's hand or a ball while receiving the same amount of heat stimulation.
"This study demonstrates how much of an impact our social ties can have on our experience and fits with other work emphasizing the importance of social support for physical and mental health," Eisenberger said.
One practical piece of advice the authors give is that the next time you are going through a stressful or painful experience, if you cannot bring a loved one with you, a photo may do.
| ||A study from the Mayo Clinic in 2003 looked at the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in people aged 10-65 with chronic pain syndromes like fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. It was reported that 93% of these were found to be deficient in vitamin D.|
A new study from the Orthopaedic Hospital Speising in Vienna, Austria, brings hope for those suffering from fibromyalgia, finding that vitamin D supplementation may ease the nerves, bringing down inflammation in the body. Study leader Florian Wepner was excited about the results, suggesting, "Vitamin D levels should be monitored regularly in FMS patients, especially in the winter season, and raised appropriately."
Although the study was able to find an association between vitamin D supplementation and an easing of fibromyalgia pain, it did not prove a cause-and-effect link.
However, two experts on the illness said the findings make sense.
"Fibromyalgia patients and those with chronic pain should certainly have their vitamin D blood levels checked and, if low, consider supplementation under the guidance of a physician," said Dr. Kiran Patel, a pain medicine specialist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City who often treats people with fibromyalgia.
Dr. Houman Danesh, director of integrative pain management at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, agreed. "Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to chronic pain, and this study further strengthens the argument to [replenish] vitamin D in deficient individuals," he said. [ Kiran Patel, M.D, pain medicine specialist, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; Houman Danesh, M.D., director, integrative pain management, The Mount Sinai Hospital, New York City; Elsevier, press release, Jan. 17, 2014]
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamine)
| ||Although little controlled scientific research exists on the effectiveness of vitamin B-12 for the treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, many doctors and patients are trying this therapy. Two well-known CFS researchers and clinicians, Dr. Paul Cheney and Dr. Charles Lapp, believe that it can be helpful for some patients in managing the symptoms of CFS or fatigue. |
Based on three studies in the New England Journal of Medicine which showed that vitamin B-12 injections were beneficial for people with "CFS-like neurological symptoms and normal blood counts," Dr. Lapp and Dr. Cheney decided to try various doses in their own patients with the hope that this might become an effective treatment option.
They began treating patients with injections of cyanocobalamin, a form of vitamin B-12 that is easily accessible in the U.S. Their informal survey of patients showed that 50-80% of their patients improved to some extent. These patients reported increased energy and sense of well-being within 12-24 hours after administration, and the effects lasted an average of 2-3 days. However, results were highly variable; effective doses ranged from 1000mcg injected daily to 5000mcg injected three times a week; many patients required up to six weeks of treatment to receive consistent results. Dr. Lapp and Dr. Cheney now recommend injections of 3000mcg of cyanocobalamin every 2-3 days.
Vitamin B Complex