Living with Fibro

Fibromyalgia and Struggling with weight

Fibromyalgia constitutes a nuisance, especially to those trying to lose weight steadily.

Fibromyalgia pains can cause the sufferer to eat less but still notice little weight loss, while the excruciating pains can make life so unbearable.

Fibromyalgia is a  condition that is associated with chronic pains, that is widespread in nature. The condition is also characterized with general fatigue and interruptions to sleep.

Most of the pains associated with Fibromyalgia are located in soft tissues and muscles, therefore it can make exercises almost impossible for sufferers.

The condition can best be described as a central nervous system problem that triggers abnormal painful sensations.

Walking with terrible pains and stiffness are the main symptoms of Fibromyalgia. Brain activities associated with Fibromyalgia often accompany Fibromyalgia and the pain can occur at different parts of the body at different times.

Fibromyalgia is characterized by some shooting or stabbing pains, and there seems to be confusion about the main causes of the condition.

Most patients report that the condition is caused by some forms of trauma, that can be in form of physical injury or illness and these illnesses may trigger some flight or fight response in the body.

There are some forms of physical abnormalities that accompany Fibromyalgia, these include;

  • Reduced blood flow to a specific part of the brain which may trigger the pains and sensitivity in any part of the body.
  • Low levels of some significant nerve growth factor.
  • Low levels of the hormones that stimulate muscle and bone growth.
  • Low levels of the cells that regulate the muscles.

Fibromyalgia and struggling with weight – the link between weight gain and Fibromyalgia

The tendency to gain weight rapidly, is one of the most frustrating issues for many reasons.

First it becomes extremely difficult to exercise because of the constant pains in the muscles and soft tissues, according to some medical researches, an individual suffering from Fibromyalgia may gain between 20 and 30 pounds of extra weight within the first year of developing Fibromyalgia.

There are a number of factors that contribute to weight gain in individuals who suffer from Fibromyalgia, these are;

Loss of sleep

This is one of the main reasons why Fibromyalgia (FM) makes weight loss extremely difficult for its victims.

An individual suffering from FM will find it difficult to achieve a “stage 4”, restorative sleep that helps restore the body to normality. We do gain weight when we find it difficult to get deep sleep.

Lack of sleep can also lead to a rapid reduction of the body’s metabolism, while increasing appetite or cravings for more food, especially for those high carbs m and sugary foods.

Fibromyalgia and Struggling with weight

Endocrine disorders

Researches have shown that there are several shortfalls in the secretion of certain hormones, in individuals suffering from Fibromyalgia.

Serotonin – the growth hormones levels for instance decreases rapidly. Similarly, cortisol and Thyroid hormones may also reduce drastically and such can contribute to a decrease in the body’s metabolism.

There can also be a sharp increase in Insulin sensitivity, a condition that can switch the body into a fat-storing mode.

Reduction in physical activity

Due to excruciating pains associated with FM, physical activities that can increase the body’s metabolism, are drastically reduced, similarly, the rate of calorie burning are also reduced.

Fibromyalgia medications

Medications can trigger weight gain- certain medications offered to FM sufferers, most especially anti-depressants can trigger certain side effects, including a rapid gain in weight.

Recommended weight loss strategies for those suffering from Fibromyalgia

Since fibromyalgia pains make it extremely difficult to burn calories through exercises, it slows the metabolism and consuming less food may not help much.

There is a form of food plan that has been designed by expert nutritionists to provide good quality fat-burning meals.

Consume high protein-low carb diets

Good quality proteins from foods such as lean meat, dairy products, eggs, tofu, and substitutes of soy meat and legumes  can help individuals suffering from FM.

You need to limit the consumption of  carbs to veggies and fruits only. Try as much as possible to include good fats, especially those found in oily fishes, almonds, avocados, and plant oils. In case you need a sugar alternative, you must consider sweeteners such as stevia.

Try as much as possible to ignore sugar and other sweet treats, alongside pasta, white bread potato, rice, hydrogenated oils, and carbonated drinks. If you must consume alcohol, then it must be in moderation.

Always consume protein first

Do not eat carbs (including the good ones0, by themselves, make sure you consume protein first. Consuming proteins first will trigger the activation of its digestive enzymes, and this can slow down the absorption of carbs significantly.

Eat until you become full

One of the mistakes made by people suffering from Fibromyalgia is that they stop eating abruptly even when they are not full. Do not eat until you are stuffed, but eat until you are full.

Make sure you eat slowly and chew your food very well, and break 3 large meals into 5 or 6 , that can be consumed all through the day. If your bowels are easily irritated, you will discover that , eating smaller food portions will help a lot.

Take a break

You should follow the diets above strictly, however, you must ensure that you take occasional breaks . You may find yourself indulging in your favourite treats on weekends, but you must stick to the diet on weekdays.

Indulge in low-impact exercises that will not cause pain

Make sure you check with your doctor before you start any exercise or special diet therapy, to be sure of what works best for you.

There are some low impact exercises you can consider for your situation, these exercises must not trigger symptoms of Fibromyalgia, likewise, they must not worsen your condition.

Fibromyalgia , should not stop you from losing weight, especially when you are dedicated to managing the condition properly through the recommendable diets highlighted above.

References

  1. http://www.nowloss.com/fibromyalgia-weight-loss-plan.htm
  2. http://www.lifescript.com/health/centers/fibromyalgia/articles/weight-loss_tips_for_fibromyalgia_sufferers.aspx

About the author

Living with Fibro

Leave a Comment