I grow vegetables to feed us, make natural ingredient creams, lotion and shampoo, cook all meals from scratch and detest E numbers. I live in the beautiful South Island of New Zealand

Posts tagged ‘Fibro’

Fibromyalgia Symptoms newsletter.

I received the following newsletter from  Fibromyalgia Symptoms today and thought some of you might be interested in the info it contains. You can subscribe to this email from their site. I find this to be the best, most informed and up to date site on Fibromyalgia. It has acres of information for sufferers and Doctors.

I am particularly interest in the info on pH levels. I never knew the testing would be so easy and something we can do at home.

May 12 Is Fibromyalgia Awareness Day

People across the world are organizing, talking and publicizing. The goal is to create awareness of Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases (CIND). These diseases include Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS), Fibromyalgia (FM), Gulf War Syndrome (GWS) and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS).

May is the month to get the word out. Public awareness is crucial as FM is still misunderstood by many. In 1992, May 12 was chosen to be Fibromyalgia Awareness Day. Why May 12? This was the birthday of Florence Nightingale, who suffered from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.


This Year, the theme is CARE, an acronym for Contribute, Advocate, Research and Educate. People interested in participating can organize events such as a community walk, a picnic, or arrange a mall or farmer’s market tabletop event. You can also set up an informational table at your local library, gym, grocery store or health fair. If you are interested in advocating, contact The National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association. You will receive a free kit that includes posters, brochures, receipt books for donations and more.

Add Yourself to the Map

This is another way of making your presence known. Add yourself to the global map. When you plot your geographical location, you help build a picture of the global FM community.

Fibro and Food

We have looked at fibro and diet in the last few newsletters. And as we mentioned before, there is a decisive link between diet and inflammation. Fresh fruits and vegetables contain sterols that help stimulate our immune system and aid in reducing inflammation.

FM sufferers are finding that eating a mostly raw vegetarian diet is helpful in reducing their fibro symptoms. Read about this interesting study with its incredibly positive results. And guess what happened to those who returned to their original, less healthy diets? Their pain came back!

Yes, eating fresh vegetables reduces pain. This diet will not cure you, but the symptoms of your fibro flair will be less intense.

The pH Factor

The measure of acidity or alkalinity in our bodies is referred to as pH. It stands for potential hydrogen. The higher the pH, the more alkaline we are; and the lower the pH, the more acidic we are. To be healthy, our bodies need an acidic-alkaline balance. A pH of seven is considered neutral, with a range of 7.30 to 7.45 being ideal. Too much acidity can weaken our immune system, create gastrointestinal disorders, high blood pressure, cancer, obesity, diabetes, neurological disorders, osteoporosis, premature aging, joint pain, chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia. When there is acidity in muscles cells, they do not perform well. Our pH levels must be slightly alkaline so our bodies can heal properly.

Is Your pH In Balance?

Acids are excreted in urine and are found in our saliva. You can find out if your body is neutralized with pH strips, which you can buy at your local health food store.

First, measure your urine either early in the morning before you eat or a few hours after dinner. Your urinary pH should be between 6.5 and 7.2. If it is below 6.5, you are acidic. To become more alkaline, you must eat more grenn leafy salads, nuts (especially almonds and chestnuts) and drink lemon water.

Saliva pH measures digestive enzymes that are made by the liver, stomach and pancreas. If the pH of your saliva is above 7.5, it is too high. You may find that you are bloated and have gas or constipation. If the saliva pH is below 6.5, your body may be making too much acid.

Balancing pH

As the old adage goes, ‘You are what you eat.’ If you need to balance your pH, eliminate all wheat and sodas from your diet. Reduce your consumption of sugars, processed foods and meat. Eat more vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds and drink a glass of lemon water a day, making sure to squeeze half of a fresh lemon into your glass.

The Gluten Factor

To help balance our pH, we should be aware of how much wheat we eat. Today, an alarmingly large number of people are sensitive to gluten. In fact, a shocking study found that celiac disease has increased by 400 percent in the last fifty years. Another scary fact is that most people do not even know if they are sensitive to gluten as the symptoms are often masked and are misdiagnosed. (Ninety-nine percent of the people who are sensitive to gluten are unaware of it.)

Gluten is found in barley, spelt, kamut, wheat, rye and some varieties of oats (as well as triticale, which is a mix of wheat and rye). It can also be hidden in salad dressings, soup mixes and sauces. As mentioned above, gluten contributes to high acidity in your diet. But did you know that eating gluten can cause disease? The New England Journal of Medicine published a review paper listing 55 diseases that are caused by gluten. Among others, these include arthritis, lupus and almost all autoimmune diseases.

In fact, gluten sensitivity is now referred to as an autoimmune disease. It can be the cause behind other diseases. It results in inflammation and affects our brain, digestive tract and joints. It is worthwhile to find out if you are sensitive to gluten. You can ask your doctor to arrange for a saiva test or blood test. Or, try to cut gluten out of your diet for a month and see how you feel. You just may have more energy and clarity.


Spring is finally here. This new season offers exciting, healthful opportunities; we can embrace warm air and sunshine, exercise outdoors and will soon be enjoying a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Wishing you all a healthy, happy spring! If you would like to suggest topics for future newsletters, please be in touch.



Fibromyalgia flare

Those of you with Fibromyalgia will know what I mean when I say I am having a fibro flare. Have been achy all week and brain fogged. I see it was the full moon a few days ago, so I suspect that has something to do with it as it always seems to effect me this way.

I woke this morning feeling like I had been hit by a bus. After having a shower I felt a little bit better but feel wooden and heavy and oh so very, very tired. I even feel a bit nauseous.

I haven’t been sleeping well lately and am often awake till 3am, then struggle to get up in the morning and feel very ‘brain fogged’ for the day. My sleeping pills don’t work any more plus am having such dreadful hot flushes that waken me at night and drive me nuts during the day. They are not just flashes, but last 10-20 mins and if I am doing something slightly energetic, they can last 30-45 mins. I positively ooze. It’s not pleasant for me and even worse when I am out or shopping. Blood tests show I am post menopausal and don’t have any disease or illness, so it is just put down to good old fibro. I can cope with the pain, tiredness, brain fog and clumsiness, but the sweating is the pits.

OK so what can I do about it? Basically grin and bear it. There is no medication that helps the pain. But I can help myself to help myself. How?? Read on.

  • Diet…. Yeah I know, you have heard it before. But I have improved since I started eating everything fresh and no preservatives or chemical numbers. My pantry has one tin of baked beans, one tin of spaghetti, and a few tins of fish. That’s it! My fridge has a block of cheese, yoghurt and bacon but hat’s the limit of my stored pre packaged food. I grow all my own vegetables, buy fresh fruit in season and bottle or freeze it, and make all meat dishes from scratch, using spices or herbs. I have also cut down my bread consumption and only eat two slices of Burgen SoyLin bread a day… usually with half an avocado, cucumber and tomato for my breakfast. I steer clear of further gluten where I can or else be prepared to suffer the consequences.
  • Exercise. Ok, I have to put action where my mouth is here as I have never been a sporty person. Even as a child I did anything I could to avoid PE or sports… I could never understand why no one else was all sore and achy like I was. I go swim walking and aqua exercising 3-4 times a week. This has helped my knees considerably and I love it. Might be different in winter tho but I want to keep at it.
  • Sleep. We all know lack of sleep leads to stress which leads to more pain. But sleeping is easier said than done too. Ideally I would love to be asleep by 10am and awaken ready to bound out of bed, into the shower and face the day at 7am. Alas my bounding days are over as that bus is usually waiting to hit me. So getting up in the morning is a slower event than it used to be. I am lucky to be asleep by midnight and if left undisturbed, I could sleep for 12 hours. I no longer use the tv in my room at night, preferring to read for a short time then try to sleep. But between the hot flushes and restless legs its pretty much a hit and miss process.
  • Coffee. I am trying to cut down on the number of cups of instant coffee I have per day. I don’t drink it after 3pm and go onto a herbal tea after that time. My water bottle is never far away either.
  • Vitamins. With out Vitamin B executive stress formula I don’t function. It really does help. Because I am getting restless legs and lower spasms I take Magnesium. I am going back on to them at night as they are said to help with sleep as well. Worth a try.

These things have worked for or are helping me. OK they may not work for every one but they are for me to some degree. The exercise one is something I resisted, but it is essential. I would like to be able to walk miles but I find the aqua exercise works much better for me.

What about you? Have you found something that really helps you? Do u have a question to ask? I’d love to hear from you.