What is the BEST diet for Fibromyalgia?


Fibromyalgia (FM) and its cause remains a mystery, but most studies suggest that FM is NOT the result of a single event but rather a combination of many physical, chemical, and emotional stressors.

The question of the month regarding the BEST FM diet is intriguing since one might assume that the many causes should mean that there isn’t one dietary solution. But is that true? Could there be a “best diet” to help ease the symptoms from such a multi-faceted disorder?

Certainly, healthy eating is VERY important for ALL of us regardless of our current ailment(s). Obesity is rampant largely due to the fact that 60% of the calories consumed by the “typical” American center around eating highly inflaming food that include those rich in Sugar, Omega-6 oil, Flour, and Trans fats (“SOFT” foods, if you will!). Obesity has been cited as “an epidemic” largely due to kids and adults becoming too sedentary (watching TV, playing on electronic devices, etc.) and eating poorly.

Perhaps the BEST way to manage the pain associated with FM and to maintain a healthy BMI (Body Mass Index, or ratio between height and weight) is to substitute ANTI-INFLAMING foods for those that inflame (or SOFT foods).

You can simplify your diet by substituting OUT “fast foods” for fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. So there you have it. It’s that simple. The problem is making up your mind to change and then actually doing it. Once these two things take place, most everyone can easily “recalibrate” their caloric intake and easily adapt.

Not only have studies shown that chronic illnesses like heart disease, stroke, and diabetes significantly benefit by following this simple dietary shift, but so does pain arising from the musculoskeletal system! This is because the human body is made up largely of chemicals, and chemical shifts are constantly taking place when it moves. If you reach for an anti-inflammatory drug like ibuprofen or naproxen and it helps, it’s because you ARE inflamed and the drug reduces the pain associated with that inflammation. This is an indication that an anti-inflammatory diet WILL HELP as well (but without the negative side effects)!

The list of chronic conditions that result in muscle pain not only includes FM but also obesity, metabolic syndrome, and type II diabetes. Conditions like tension-type and migraine headaches, neck and back pain, disk herniation, and tendonopathies and MANY more ALL respond WELL to making this SIMPLE change in the diet. For more information on how to “DEFLAME,” visit http://www.deflame.com! It could be a potential “lifesaver!

I smoke and I sit; does that matter?

Your thoracic spine is made up of 12 individual vertebrae stacked on top of each other. To allow for flexibility and movement, there is a cushion or “disc” in between each level. As we age, these discs can wear and become thinner over time. This leads to additional changes, including bone spurs and narrowing of the opening where your nerves exit your spine. This process is called “thoracic spondylosis”, or simply, “arthritis”.

How quickly you develop back arthritis is largely a trait you inherited from your parents. Other factors may play a role, including a history of trauma, smoking, operating motorized vehicles, being overweight and/ or performing repetitive movements (i.e. lifting, twisting, bending or sitting). Men seem to be affected slightly more often than women.

Symptoms often begin as back pain that gradually worsens over time. Stiffness may be present upon arising in the morning. Pain is relieved by rest or light activity and aggravated by strenuous work. Sometimes your nerves can become “pinched” in narrowed openings where they exit your spine. This can cause pain, numbness, or tingling radiating around your trunk along the path of the irritated nerve. Be sure to tell your doctor if you notice any weakness or if you have a rash (running along your rib), fever, abdominal pain, change in bowel or bladder function, or pain in your groin crease.

Arthritic changes can be seen on x-rays, but interestingly, the amount of wearing does not seem to correlate directly with the severity of your symptoms. People with the same degree of arthritis may have symptoms ranging from none to severe. Most researchers believe that the symptoms of osteoarthritis are not the direct result of the disease, but rather, from the conditions that preceded the disease and those that develop after it, like joint restrictions and muscle tightness. Fortunately, those conditions are treatable and our office has a variety of tools to help relieve your pain.

In general, you should avoid repeated lifting and twisting and take frequent breaks from prolonged sitting, especially in motorized vehicles. Avoid any position that causes an increase in radiating pain. Light exercise, like walking, stationary cycling, water aerobics, and yoga may be helpful. Smokers should find a program to help them quit and overweight patients will benefit from a diet and exercise program.

Diet & Exercise Tip Of The Month

Exercise Tip

Have you ever started a new exercise program and then suddenly gained a few

pounds? Don’t fret. It’s normal! Exercise is a stress on your body, which creates micro

tears in your muscles, and the inflammation from those tears will cause you to retain

more water. Your body will also start to store more glycogen in your muscles to make

sure you have plenty of fuel to burn during your next workout. Those two things will

cause a temporary weight gain when you first start working out. A better way to track

your progress will always be to take measurements. If you’re losing inches, you’re


Food Myth #6: Energy Drinks Are Better Than Soda


Red Bull, Monster and their brethren aim to give you a bump in energy with a giant dose of sugar, B vitamins, caffeine and “herbal extracts”. I’d imagine you’re already thinking “this sounds like a bad thing that I should avoid” but in case you aren’t…..

A 16 ounce can of this stuff packs a whopping 280 (!) calories of SUGAR in it which is about 80 calories more than the same sized serving of Pepsi or Coke. Still drinking this stuff? Great, I’ll pass along a few dentist contacts as well since a University of Maryland study showed that they are also 11% more corrosive on your teeth than soft drinks.

Drink more water, tea, black coffee and avoid anything with EXTREME or NEON on the can and you’ll be fine…….




Food Myth #5: High Fructose Corn Syrup is worse than other sugars.


Sugar is everywhere and most don’t even know it.

Dextrose, sucrose, rice syrup, maltodextrin….. All sugars and all affect our bodies the same way. While these monikers may not be as well known or as much maligned as high fructose corn syrup they are just as much of a health inhibitor as HFCS and good old table sugar.

While HFCS has long been seen as the worst of a bad bunch, a 2014 review of multiple studies found there was no difference in blood glucose changes between HFCS or table sugar. Basically, your body can’t tell one from the other and all the cigars mentioned above cause similar reactions in your body. Sugar is sugar.

The biggest issue with HFCS? It is EVERYWHERE. In order to reduce your sugar intake you’ll need to know many terms for sugars and keep an eye on what you’re eating day in and day out.







Food Myth #4


Nuts are junk food and should be avoided

Nut-uh. Nuts are a great source of protein, healthy fats and nutrient but are relatively high in calories. As a result they are a great snack but you need to keep an eye on portion control.

Recent research at Harvard (heard of them?) showed that women who ate a handful of nuts 5 times a week as a snack were 20% less likely to develop type II diabetes as those that didn’t. Also, several studies have shown that having nuts as a regular part of your diet helps protect against heart disease.

Now, this isn’t licence to crush all the peanuts you want when you’re watching the game… Be smart about your intake and look for nuts like almonds, brazils, cashews, macadamias and pistachios that aren’t swimming in (admittedly delicious) salt and oil.

So when you’re planning your snacks for the Super Bowl or the next Jets game, go nuts.


Food Myth #3


Avoid eggs because of their cholesterol content.

Eggs got a bad rep years ago because we thought they contributed to a rise in levels of LDL (Bad) cholesterol. The most recent research shows that eggs don’t actually contribute to high cholesterol at all and are a great source of iron, zinc, lutein, vitamin D and choline, not to mention a cheap, easy source of protein.

So go ahead with your eggs tomorrow morning! You’ll be healthier for it.







Food Myth #2

Meal Prep

Mixing Carbs, Fats & Proteins is hard on digestion

I’ve heard this myth from people for years and I have no clue where it came form. The idea is that by combining foods you will overwhelm your digestive system and minimize proper absorption of nutrients.

In reality, there is zero science to back this up. Your body is more than capable of dealing with multiple food type as soon as they enter your system. The acids in your stomach will start working on every ounce of food you ingest without fail regardless of the make up of your meal.

Trying to separate carbs, proteins and fats into individual meals over the course of the day while also trying to eat healthy is an unnecessary complication to an already complicated process. Enjoy balanced, healthy meals without worrying about the processes your body uses to get the nutrients into your system.

Food Myth Series


Over the next few weeks we will be addressing some common food myths that, frankly, drive us a little bit crazy when we hear them. Hopefully we are able to clarify some common misconceptions regarding diet and how what you eat affects how you feel and perform.

We are always open to discussion and want to hear any food myths you have heard in your travels that made you go “What?”.

So, without further delay, food myth #1:

Eating Fats Is Unhealthy

Generations of now adults have been brainwashed into believing that fats = getting fat by the Canada Food Guide. This is simply not the case. While some fats are unhealthy, plenty more have benefits that you won’t find elsewhere. A lower calorie eating plan that includes healthy fats can help people lose more weight than a similar diet that’s low in fat, according to a study in the International Journal of Obesity. Fats make food taste better, keep you fuller and help prevent overeating.

It is true that fats have more calories per gram than proteins and carbs but those calories come with health benefits that the others don’t. Healthy fats like the ones found in salmon, olive oil, nuts and avocados are key to several healthy living goals including:

1. They are a major fuel source for your body (meaning they provides a lot of calories) and are also the main way you store energy.
2. You need fat to help you absorb certain nutrients, such as fat-soluble vitamins (vitamins A, D, E and K) and antioxidants (like lycopene and beta-carotene).
3. Fats are important in giving your cells structure.
4. Omega-3 fats, a type of unsaturated fat, are important for optimum nerve, brain and heart function.

One type of fat you don’t need? Trans fats, an artificial kind of fat found in partially hydrogenated oils and a main ingredient in the food frying process (delicious, yes, but very unhealthy).


So there you go, a quick overview of why fats are important in every healthy diet. Come back next week for more food myth-busting.