Beat back the pain with a diet elimination challenge

Living with fibromyalgia is unimaginably difficult due to the interminable aching and pain that inhibit everyday activities. Many people try different ways to control their symptoms without resorting to the overuse of drugs. Although there are no scientific studies that prove diet eliminations can cure symptoms of fibromyalgia pain, many fibromyalgia sufferers do note signs of improvement after cutting certain foods, giving others hope that they too can improve their quality of life through diet elimination challenges.

What is a diet elimination challenge?

A diet elimination challenges requires the individual to cut certain foods from their normal intake for a week or two. Then, the individual starts to reintegrate those foods, one-by-one, into their diet. This happens over a period of three weeks. During this time, it is important to keep a food journal handy to record any noticeable changes in your body.

Who tries diet elimination challenges?

Diet elimination challenges are used by all types of people who suffer from food-related allergies, such as chronic inflammation, intestinal disorders, headaches, and many other ailments. But the same strategy has been helpful to many fibromyalgia sufferers, and it’s an exciting potential new weapon in the fight against the painful onslaught from this disease. 

What foods should I try cutting from my diet?

Here is a list of foods in the “level one” category. These are known common food allergy triggers.

  • Sugar
  • Dairy
  • Wheat
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine, including coffee, chocolate, tea, and soft drinks

Some of these foods trigger inflammation, while others trigger very intense headaches. Reducing inflammation in the body may be helpful in managing the pain, and anything to end headaches is a welcome relief. Always consult your doctor before making drastic changes to your diet, lifestyle and treatment. 

The Food Journal

Remember, always keep a journal to write down any changes in mood, pain, and general well-being while reintegrating foods back into your daily diet. This is important so you can look back and compare notes for all of the days in your diet elimination challenge and come to a conclusion on which foods you should continue to cut.

A Few Tips

  • Make sure to read all food labels while undergoing the diet elimination challenge. You might be surprised to see one of the foods you’re trying to cut out appears in your favorite cereal or ice cream! This is a common way for elimination challenges to have unwanted results.
  • Clean out your fridge and pantry prior to starting your challenge. This will help with tempting treats that will ruin the results of your healthy experiment. You could even donate unwanted items to your local food bank!
  • Find support from your loved ones by asking them to participate in the diet elimination challenge with you. Who knows? You might bond over how much you miss chocolate! But the sure thing is your family will come to understand your struggles in a new way, which will help bring you together.

Remember that there is no proven cure for fibromyalgia, but luckily there are so many ways you can try to reduce your symptoms. As the saying goes: we are what we eat! Try out a diet elimination challenge and you might just be surprised at the results!

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