THE SCIENCE BEHIND CBD USE FOR FIBROMYALGIA…

Cannabidiol or CBD is one of the naturally occurring chemical compounds derived from cannabis. There is an increasing interest in the therapeutic benefits of CBD. Numerous research studies have made CBD a popular choice in the medicinal sector. 

Out of these, a small body of research suggests that CBD can benefit those suffering from fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is one of those disorders that are difficult to detect. But, once diagnosed, it can be managed successfully. One of the treatment options is the use of CBD.

Fibromyalgia affects nearly 1 in 20 people globally. It is estimated that almost 2.5 million people in the UK suffer from this condition. Many people are using CBD oil for back pain.

In general, pain relievers or antidepressants are used to reduce the symptoms of fibromyalgia, but there is a growing belief that CBD can perform the same function. CBD can reduce the pain associated with the condition with minimal side effects and little risk of addiction. 

Without further ado, let’s know more about fibromyalgia and CBD’s potential benefits. Continue reading to also learn about the scientific insights behind the use of CBD for fibromyalgia.

What is Fibromyalgia?

Characterized by long-term pain, fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder that can spread throughout the body. Few have termed this condition as ‘fibromyalgia syndrome.’ Surprisingly, there is no cure for this condition, but only the symptoms can be managed.

The causes of the condition vary widely from psychological to physical. The psychological causes include anxiety, PTSD, depression, or any stressful experience. Whereas, the physical causes include sleep deprivation, infections, genetics, and other diseases like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or hypothyroidism.

The common symptoms include increased pain sensitivity, chronic fatigue, stiffness, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), migraines, headaches, insomnia, cognitive challenges, depression, etc. According to reports, women are more likely to be affected by this condition than men.

Typically, one can manage these symptoms by medications, therapy regimes like massage therapy, yoga, and even cognitive behavioral therapy. Now, let’s know more about one of the most recognized treatments — CBD!

How effective is CBD for fibromyalgia?

Research studies have revealed that CBD can help in the management of fibromyalgia. CBD may alleviate the symptoms of fibromyalgia and change the pain process to improve your quality of life. According to studies CBD interrupts the nerve pathways of the brain that sends signals of pain, in turn, relieving the pain associated with fibromyalgia. There’s more to the research of the use of CBD for symptoms of fibromyalgia.

So, let’s dive into the scientific insights behind the use of CBD for fibromyalgia.● CBD for Fibromyalgia: Pain

Chronic pain is one of the significant characteristics of fibromyalgia. Increased pain sensitivity is the reason that makes people live a miserable life. CBD has potent analgesic properties and the potential to improve the quality of life. 

2019 study observed people with fibromyalgia for six months to analyze the safety and effectiveness of CBD. The study revealed that CBD could be a safe and effective treatment option for fibromyalgia patients. ● CBD for Fibromyalgia: Anxiety and Sleep

People with fibromyalgia have a difficult time sleeping due to pain and discomfort. Lack of sleep can lead to stress, anxiety, and fatigue. CBD gummies for pain have been shown to alleviate insomnia and sleep issues in patients with fibromyalgia. 

One of the studies that determined the effectiveness of CBD in the improvement of sleep and anxiety, revealed that CBD appeared to be better tolerated for anxiety and sleep than routine psychiatric medications.● CBD for Fibromyalgia: Inflammatory Disorders

Inflammation plays an essential role in fibromyalgia. Inflammation aggravates the disease and hampers the overall management of the condition. Studies have found that CBD has anti-inflammatory properties that can heal the condition. Hence, it alleviates the symptoms of associated inflammatory disorders like metabolic syndrome or rheumatoid arthritis. 

Another study revealed that cannabinoids exhibit the significant potential to be used as a novel anti-inflammatory agent. Cannabinoids suppress the inflammatory response to attenuate disease symptoms.● CBD for Fibromyalgia: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

70% of fibromyalgia patients suffer from IBS. IBS can lead to stress, anxiety, and depression if the pain becomes unbearable and chronic. CBD dosages can help alleviate this unexplainable pain. CBD is known to provide relief from IBS owing to its analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties.

A study indicated that CBD unravels a new therapeutic strategy for the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases. 

To summarize, CBD can effectively reduce pain, improve sleep, irritable bowel syndrome, migraine, and similar conditions involving chronic pain.

Final Thoughts

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disease, and CBD will not cure it but can only manage the symptoms. Symptoms vary with time and the patient’s condition. Many patients experiment with a combination of therapies to manage the symptoms. 

CBD can be consumed in many ways, including vaping, oil extracts, edibles, and topicals. But it is recommended to consult a medical professional before using it for fibromyalgia. 

Moreover, in the UK, CBD is legal as long as THC content in the product is less than 0.2%, whereas, in the USA, the legal limit for THC is 0.3%. One can experience the benefits of CBD for fibromyalgia, but in case of legal issues, one should stop and consider the risk versus the benefit.

On the contrary, if your doctor approves of a CBD treatment and the product is available in your area, you will be living a much healthier and pain-free life soon enough.

POLYMYALGIA -V- FIBROMYALGIA – OR COULD YOU HAVE BOTH?…

Both polymyalgia and fibromyalgia may cause depression related to living with a painful chronic condition. According to the Mayo Clinic, older adults, usually over age 65, are more likely to be diagnosed with polymyalgia rheumatica. It’s rare in people under age 50, but anyone can get #fibromyalgia at any age. But it tends to be more common in women than in men.

It is possible for a person to have both polymyalgia and fibromyalgia. Polymyalgia rheumatica is an inflammatory form of arthritis,   that’s believed to be autoimmune, meaning that the body is attacking its own healthy tissues because it mistakes them for infectious agents such as viruses or bacteria. Fibromyalgia does not show traditional signs of inflammation, though some recent research from 2017 suggests it may also involve inflammation.

Blood tests can usually diagnose polymyalgia, however, no single test can determine if a person has fibromyalgia, instead a physical exam that looks for specific tender points may be used. A doctor may also take blood samples to rule out inflammatory conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis. 

Because of their surface similarities, it’s possible for polymgaliga rheumatica to be misdiagnosed as fibromyalgia or vice versa, or for either condition to be overlooked in someone who’s already diagnosed with one of the other.

Very Well Health points out that ‘ these two conditions, however, are very different and require different treatments. Knowing the symptoms of both can help you recognize whether you may have a new or undiagnosed condition that needs to be addressed.’

However, apart from their name and main symptom, fibromyalgia and polymyalgia have little in common. Even the muscle pain might be slightly different — some experts suggest polymyalgia muscle pain doesn’t include the tenderness you may experience with fibromyalgia muscle pain.

Treatment for polymyalgia is prescription corticosteroids, ith medication, you may see a major improvement in your polymyalgia symptoms in just a few days. If after two to three weeks on the medication you don’t get better, it’s likely you don’t have polymyalgia but another condition.

The main difference is that polymyalgia rheumatica is an inflammatory condition, and fibromyalgia is a non-inflammatory condition. Because of this, polymyalgia rheumatica responds to treatment with anti-inflammatory medications. Whereas fibromyalgia is a non-inflammatory condition caused by the nervous system that results in pain and is associated with fatigue, ‘brain fog’ and sleep problems and responds to a different set of medications.

I am a twin and my twin sister was diagnosed with polymyalgia rheumatica, whereas I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia but many years apart,  but we both feel this is also quite strange.

TOP 6 ANTI-INFLAMMATORY FOODS TO HELP WITH CHRONIC PAIN & 4 GREAT COOKERY BOOKS USING THESE FOODS…

Anti-inflammatory Foods — YOGABYCANDACE

First, if we start off by trying to avoid certain foods which can actually cause inflammation – Health Harvard suggest –

Try to avoid or limit these foods as much as possible:

  • refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and pastries
  • French fries and other fried foods
  • soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages
  • red meat (burgers, steaks) and processed meat (hot dogs, sausage)
  • margarine, shortening, and lard

Health Harvard’s choice of foods to include which will help fight inflammation include –

An anti-inflammatory diet should include these foods:

  • tomatoes
  • olive oil
  • green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, kale, and collards
  • nuts like almonds and walnuts
  • fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and sardines
  • fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, cherries, and oranges

Healthline explains that Berries contain antioxidants called anthocyanins. These compounds have anti-inflammatory effects that may reduce your risk of disease. Your body produces natural killer cells (NK cells), which help keep your immune system functioning properly.

Healthline also says about fatty fish that EPA and DHA  found in these fish can reduce inflammation that can lead to metabolic syndrome, heart disease, diabetes, and kidney disease. Your body metabolizes these fatty acids into compounds called resolvins and protectins, which have anti-inflammatory effects. Studies have found that people consuming salmon or EPA and DHA supplements experienced reductions in the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein (CRP)

Healthline also includes avocados, peppers, mushrooms and grapes in their list of anti-inflammatory foods, and my absolute favourite food Dark chocolate which is delicious, rich, and satisfying. It’s also packed with antioxidants that reduce inflammation. These may reduce your risk of disease and lead to healthier ageing.

Some great cookbooks on Anti-inflammatory diets are The Anti-Inflammatory Cookbook by Alice Newman (£15.99) Amazon, which has easy and super healthy recipes that can help you to follow this diet and the main foods that help you identify inflammation-causing ingredients and inflammation-fighting superfoods.

The Anti-Inflammatory Diet Cookbook: How to Reduce Inflammation Naturally: Top 15 Anti-Inflammatory Foods. Easy, Healthy and Tasty Recipes That Will Make You Feel Better Than Ever by [Alice Newman]

The Anti-Inflammatory Diet & Action Plans: 4 Week Meal Plans to Heal the Immune System and Restore Overall Health by Dorothy Calimeris & Sondi Bruner (£11) Amazon – Choose from four different meal plans-Mediterranean, Paleo, Vegetarian, and Timesaving–to help you transition to a nourishing, inflammation-free lifestyle. • Use weekly shopping lists, storage suggestions, and meal prep shortcuts to save time and money. • Study comprehensive food lists that identify which foods trigger inflammation and which foods relieve it.

 

Another great book/cookbook which is available on Amazon (£5.81) but only available on Kindle is Everything you need to know about Spirulina, The World’s Highest Protein Food explained with delicious recipes included (Spirulina Cookbook Book 1) by Tina Quick. Tina Quick has been vegan since age 19. She loves cooking healthy, delicious vegan food and teaching others how to eat a healthy plant-based diet. Also included are dozens of amazing spirulina recipes for better health. This superfood is extremely versatile and can be used in smoothies, drinks, salads, soups, and much more!

Everything You Need To Know About Spirulina: The World’s Highest Protein Food Explained With Delicious Recipes Included (Spirulina Cookbook Book 1) by [Tina Quick]

 

Finally, another great cookery book about using super seeds in your cooking is Super Seeds: The Complete Guide to Cooking with Power-Packed Chia, Quinoa, Flax, Hemp, and Amaranth (Superfood) by Kim Lutz. (£12.99) Amazon. Five super seeds covered in one super volume! Chia, hemp, flax, quinoa, and amaranth are tiny powerhouses that deliver whopping amounts of protein, essential fatty acids and great taste in every serving. Perfect for vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free diets, they each get to take a star turn in these 75 mouthwatering recipes. Convenient and versatile, the seeds work wonderfully in everything from muffins and bread to salads, soups, and desserts. Super Seeds is a must-have for anyone interested in eating healthily and deliciously.

 

8 FREE OR UNDER £5 GREAT BOOKS ON FIBROMYALGIA…

#Free and under £5 books on #fibromyalgia…

The Pain Within Me: My Battle With Fibromyalgia, by Lawawn Dunbar : £1.50 on Amazon Kindle – Diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2012, Lawawn suffered from pain for too long, and so decided to give her testimony. ‘The Pain Within Me’ tells her story of an ongoing battle with this disease, in the hope to raise awareness and connect with those who share her struggles.

The Pain Within Me: My Battle with Fibromyalgia by [Lawawn Dunbar]

Fibromyalgia Digest as seen on NBC TV – for a FREE copy of the book “Treating and Beating Fibromyalgia and CFS” – just head to the website and fill in your name and email address.

Upper Cervical Healthcare has a FREE ebook to download on Natural Help for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Sufferers on their website here. 

Local Los Angeles Doctor writes eBook on a little-known connection between your upper neck, whiplash injuries and Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. In this book, you will learn about a little-known procedure that has been helping Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue patient’s improve with a noninvasive and natural approach.

Your Guide to Treating Fibromyalgia – a FREE download ebook Step by Step – A Personal Approach to Managing Fibromyalgia This ebook is packed with detailed information about the most effective means of treating Fibromyalgia. Experts and Researchers agree that a “Patient Directed” Fibromyalgia management program is the best treatment approach. While dozens of proven effective treatment options are discussed at length, the focus of this book is on the process of putting systems to use in researching, planning, implementing and managing the development of an individualized Fibromyalgia treatment program. Through the key concept of “Intelligent” Trial and Error – this ebook will teach you a more effective means of managing Fibromyalgia on a daily basis. You can find it on their website here. 

Your Guide to Treating Fibromyalgia

Free From Fibromyalgia Book 3 Pain and Exercise by Tricia Duffy £2.14 – The author was diagnosed with severe fibromyalgia in June 2000. Despite being told that she probably would never recover, Tricia is now well and living a full and satisfying life. She has experienced the pain and so can relate to others who suffer from fibromyalgia. Several practical steps are outlined that really do help with the pain. How the muscles are affected and why this causes the pain is explained here. This leads to the reasons why exercise is so vital when looking at overcoming the debilitating symptoms of fibromyalgia, available from Amazon.

Free from Fibromyalgia Book 3 Pain and Exercise by [Tricia Duffy]

Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain Syndrome: A practical guide to getting on with your life by Chris Jenner Kindle Edition £3.99 – Written by one of the UK’s leading consultants on pain control, this authoritative, yet easily comprehensible book, delivers a high level of understanding and practical advice to the lay reader. Highly recommended. Manage your Fibromyalgia by becoming an expert patient. There really is life after being diagnosed with fibromyalgia or myofascial pain syndrome, available from Amazon.

Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain Syndrome: A practical guide to getting on with your life by [Chris Jenner]

Fibromyalgia: A Guide to Understanding the Journey by Shelley Bolton – £3.29 – This quick read is informative and entertaining, with personal stories and documented research. It doesn’t offer cures and this is intentional. No cures have been found, but what so many of us desperately need is to understand and be understood. That is the purpose of this short, insightful book, available from Amazon.

Fibromyalgia: A Guide to Understanding the Journey by [Shelly Bolton]

But You Don’t Look Sick Fibromyalgia An Invisible Illness by Bette Brown – £3.99 on Kindle from Amazon – For many years Bette Brown has been diagnosed and living with the challenges of fibromyalgia (sometimes referred to as Fibromyalgia Syndrome or FMS). She knows how it affects every corner of your life. She’s had to make several lifestyle changes to ensure she can keep fighting this life-changing illness. As well as her own experience, knowledge and research, she has had access to the personal stories of others who have had the challenge and trauma of living with fibromyalgia and its effect. They have agreed Bette can share these with you. This is a down to earth, easy-to-read book about the debilitating, fluctuating and frequently misunderstood illness fibromyalgia. Ann Livingstone B.A.(Hons) Business Admin Amazon

 

But You Don't Look Sick!: Fibromyalgia an Invisible illness by [Bette Brown]

 

CHANGE OF SEASON PAIN FOR FIBROMYALGIA SUFFERERS…

Fibromyalgia flare-ups are quite common for Fibromyalgia sufferers but what is the biggest cause of them?

Well, apparently its The Weather – hip hip hooray now I know I’m not imagining it! Fibromyalgia flare-ups are a temporary increase in the number and/or intensity of symptoms.  Extreme fatigue, aching joints, tender muscles and general weariness can interrupt your day and leave you worrying about your deteriorating condition. Luckily, worsening symptoms usually have a distinct cause, and with the right approach, they can be treated directly and effectively. Get to the bottom of intensifying fibro fatigue and discomfort before you try to treat it. Some flare-ups can last a few days to a few weeks and there are a number of causes for them. For me, the change in weather has always had the biggest impact on my Fibro and not just when it turns colder.

Temperature makes a difference in how we feel with Fibro but it can also affect other musculoskeletal disorders. Changes in the barometer can also trigger symptoms. Also if rain or snow is forecast this can trigger some symptoms to flare-up. They say a consistently warm, dry climate is probably best for Fibro sufferers. According to Fibromyalgia-symptoms.org, there are five “major weather factors” that can affect our bodies. They are temperature, barometric pressure, humidity, precipitation and wind. We may not be able to control what the weather does, but we can take some steps to try and head off a #fibro flare before it occurs when it is time for a seasonal change. Brian Barr solicitors say that so far, researchers have been unable to determine why the changes in weather affect sufferers, however, there are some possible explanations. Firstly, changes in temperature can affect sleep patterns. Getting plenty of sleep is really important if you have #fibromyalgia, and even small shifts in your sleep pattern can aggravate the condition. Secondly, as the seasons change, the amount of light also varies. The light mornings make wake you up earlier so invest in a blackout blind. Thirdly, a simple one but it can make a big difference is the quilt on your bed. Change for a much lighter weight for the summer season. This may sound strange but even the weight of a heavy quilt in the summer will stop me sleeping well.

Very Well Health wrote that “although they don’t have a ton of research on the impact of weather on #fibromyalgia symptoms, but they do have a handful of studies. Also, we can look to research on weather’s effect on other pain conditions, such as arthritis and migraine, which have been studied for a lot longer.”

“A large internet survey of nearly 2,600 people with #fibromyalgia helps shed some light on this relationship. This was a general survey, not one specifically looking for weather-related information. When asked what things appeared to make their symptoms worse, a whopping 80 percent of respondents said “weather changes.”Not only is that a large number, but it also was the second-most reported worsening factor, coming in only after “emotional distress” (83 percent), and above “sleeping problems” (79 percent), “strenuous activity” (70 percent), and “mental stress” (68 percent).”

New Life Outlook Fibromyalgia points out that it is not uncommon to hear someone with arthritis claiming their knee or hip can predict the weather better than a meteorologist. They always know in advance when a cold front or a rainstorm are moving in, with almost scary accuracy. Many with one type of rheumatic condition or another, including #fibromyalgia, have made claims that the changes of weather will affect their pain levels, fatigue levels, or other various symptoms. There is lots of help and advice online about Fibro Flare-Ups from Fibromyalgia New Life Outlook and UK Fibromyalgia. Other factors that cause Fibromyalgia flare-ups include –

  1. Stress
  2. Sleep (or lack of)
  3. Overexertion
  4. Exercise or over-exertion
  5. Illness
  6. Diet – processed foods in particular
  7. Hormonal change
  8. Travel
  9. Medication changes

One thing I found helped me with a flare-up was by writing it in my diary when it happened and what I did to help with it and if it helped. I also have a list of all the things I enjoy that take me away from my pain like one of my hobbies (making cards) and baking but maybe for you something like Tai Chi may help. Just knowing something that works will help get through the flare-up. Make a note in your diary of a particular treatment that helped or a medication or piece of equipment like a tens machine that helped. Knowing that there is something you can do, use or otherwise for your flare-up, will get you through the worst days and back to controlling it as you normally do.