Basics of Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia is a central nervous system disease that affects up to 2% of the general adult population.
It is a disease in which the central nervous system becomes oversensitive to the signals of pain that are generated at the various sensory centers of the body.
A person with fibromyalgia is afflicted with constant and chronic body pain that is diffused over the entire body and cannot be tied to a single physiological problem.
This is because the central nervous system of a person suffering from fibromyalgia tends to amplify the pain signals that it receives and suppress the impulses that help to combat the pain and reduce its intensity. Fibromyalgia is a disease that also includes psychological components.
People suffering from this disease tend to have other problems like depression and interrupted sleep. This also causes them to face problems in cognition and concentration wherein they perform poorly when compared to normal people in tests and tasks that require concentration and cognitive ability. Patients of this disease also complain of other problems like restless leg syndrome and gastric distress.
The diet connection
A common problem associated with fibromyalgia is irritable bowel syndrome. This is because fibromyalgia is a disease of the central nervous system and therefore tends to disrupt nearly every single function of the body that is controlled by it. Irritable bowel syndrome and other bowel diseases are caused because the entire digestive system is controlled by the nervous system to a great deal.
People with poor diets are at higher risk of developing fibromyalgia when compared to people with better diets. Nutritional deficiencies contribute to the problems caused by fibromyalgia by introducing several imbalances in the human body. Bad nutrition in and of itself can cost several problems including muscular pain, skeletal degeneration and joint pains.
When bad nutrition is combined with fibromyalgia all these problems are magnified. Not having the right amount of sodium in a diet can cause muscular problems and decreased blood pressure. Having too much sodium can cause muscle spasms and high blood pressure which in turn lead to other problems.
It is very difficult to have a good and balanced diet. Any important nutrients that are missed out can cause the body to malfunction and create new problems like the degeneration of joint cartilage and connective tissue leading to even more pain. Having a balanced diet is even more important if a person is afflicted with fibromyalgia.
Gluten & Fibromyalgia
Gluten is a protein that is found in wheat and other similar grains. It is a protein continent of these grains and is usually digested and absorbed without any difficulty. However, roughly one in a hundred people are intolerant to gluten. This intolerance has been determined to be genetic.
The problems that people who are gluten intolerant face upon the consumption of gluten include irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, diarrhea, energy loss, dry skin, increased appetite, hemophilia or the inability of the blood to clot effectively, vital electrolyte loss, excessive flatulence and general weakness and lethargy.
All these problems serve to intensify the negative effects of fibromyalgia. Gluten consumption by people who are gluten intolerant can also lead to several psychological problems which include depression, irritability, mood swings and a general inability to concentrate on cognitive tasks.
It is clear that all these problems are very similar to those that are caused by fibromyalgia. It therefore makes sense to conclude that the consumption of gluten by gluten intolerant people were also afflicted by fibromyalgia can only aggravate these problems further.
Other problems that can be caused by eating gluten include inflammation of the bowels, lupus, osteoporosis and other autoimmune diseases.
In the light of recent research it has been seen that gluten plays a major role in triggering and exacerbating the problems of fibromyalgia in patients. The reason for this is the gluten insensitivity is actually an autoimmune disorder. When exposed to gluten, the small intestine of people who are gluten intolerant becomes irritated and inflamed.
This affects its ability to absorb other nutrients that are necessary for the proper functioning of the body. Even in people who can tolerate gluten, it is important to avoid gluten containing foods. This is because the gluten in these foods can trigger a flare up of chronic body pain, depression, distention, back pain and dehydration.
The consumption of gluten is dangerous even for healthy individuals as it exposes them to all the problems associated with certain kinds of malnutrition and this is the reason that gluten containing foods must be strictly avoided by people suffering from fibromyalgia.