When medications didn’t stop her daily chronic pains, Barbara thought about ending her suffering for good. She was deeply disappointed after zillions of tests, years of different pain medications, and exhausting herself in exercise programs. She couldn't bear an unending future of wet weather aches, cold winters wracking her body with pain, and nights of restless sleep. Fortunately, her daughter kept looking for a solution.
Her daughter worked for one of the biggest healthcare organizations in the country. However, she found a solution outside of her big corporation. On an internet search, her daughter found a local healing center that had experience in treating fibromyalgia.
Instead of receiving more medications, Barbara found someone who could help reinvigorate her own natural healing abilities. She got something that she didn't expect on the first treatment. After years of disappointments,her body had 60 percent less pain. In some areas, the pain had disappeared completely, though a knee with a replacement joint still ached. As she continued treatment, she found healing for her aches and pains that had accumulated over the years.
Chinese Medicine and FM Pain
Chinese medicine looks at fibromyalgia as a problem with the functioning of the whole body as well as in specific systems. For thousands of years, Chinese medical texts have described successful treatments for illnesses similar to fibromyalgia.
In Chinese medicine, one cause of fibromyalgia pain is described as "excess dampness." Dampness is defined as a substance that moistens different systems in the body. Excess internal dampness causes pain and fatigue. Rainy weather can increase internal dampness which flares up your fibromyalgia symptoms. Excess dampness can also show up as a yeast, bacterial, or viral infection. As microorganisms and their waste products accumulate in your muscles and joints, you feel more pain and fatigue.
How can you get excess dampness out?
How can you keep it from coming back?
Strategies for Resolving Painful Dampness
There are three strategies for eliminating excess fibromyalgia dampness.
1. Modify your diet by adding food that drains excess dampness and removing food that produces more dampness.
2. Strengthen your internal ability to drain dampness.
3. Detoxify waste products and metals out of your body.
These changes can lead to rapid improvements in your energy level, quality of sleep, mental clarity, and chronic pain reduction.
1. A. Increase your intake of food that reduces dampness
Below are foods to eat that dry out excess dampness and reduce aches and fatigue. I highly recommend getting organically grown or minimally processed versions of these foods:
Barley, rye, amaranth, alfalfa sprouts, corn
Celery, lettuce, turnips, kohlrabi
Seaweeds like nori, wakame
Raw goat milk
White pepper, pau d’arco, chamomile
1. B. Reduce your intake of food that creates more dampness
Below are food to avoid that can increase painful dampness in muscles and joints:
Products made from wheat, breads, pasta, desserts
Fried food, fatty meats
Desserts, soda, candy, sweetened drinks, sweetened food
Highly processed food like hot dogs with nitrates, food with lots of preservatives or additives, artificially sweetened food
Changing your diet may require an adjustment period for you to let go of familiar comfort or quick-energy foods. As you feel better, eating these foods gets much easier. Draining excess dampness out of your body helps too.
2. Strengthen your ability to eliminate dampness
You can enhance your ability to drain painful dampness from muscles and joints through acupuncture treatment and Chinese herbs. With less dampness in your body, you feel less pain and fatigue. You feel even better when the toxic waste products of harmful organisms are removed from your system.
3. Detoxify toxins and metals out of your system
The waste products from infectious organisms accumulate as toxins in your blood, muscles, and joints. Your immune system can’t effectively fight against infectious organisms with toxins and harmful metals in your body. You also feel better and have more energy when these toxins and metals are out of your system. Reducing or stopping the use of tobacco or recreational chemical substances helps to detoxify your system.
These strategies work together to eliminate excess dampness out of your body, which relieves your pain and your fatigue.
You feel much lighter and more energized as you clear out unhealthy dampness through acupuncture treatment, herbs, detoxification, and dietary changes. As your muscles and joints get cleaned of unhealthy gunk, your pain decreases too. You sleep better and feel hope for the first time in years. The real test is seeing how you react to the next rainstorm.
After a few weeks of treatment, some clients have much less pain and fatigue during wet weather. Some report that they can run errands without debilitating discomfort. As you eliminate excess dampness, you may have much less pain and discomfort and be able to start resuming normal activities. This change helped Barbara to have new hope for her future. She has returned to social activities and started home renovation projects, and even went through a winter with her electric blanket on a setting of “5.”
With the right combination of dietary changes, detoxification, and treatment with a Chinese medicine practitioner, perhaps you can manage your FM symptoms better, too.
Gregory Lee is a licensed acupuncturist, Chinese herbalist, and Master Sufi Healer. He is co-founder of the Two Frogs Healing Center in Frederick, Maryland. He has helped clients to reduce their fibromyalgia pain and fatigue through the Healing Fibromyalgia Forever Program. To learn more, click here.
This article was originally published in FMOnline. This free online newsletter is only available to registered members. Click here to register!
View other articles in vol. 8, no. 10 of FMOnline:
In the Spotlight
How Do You Cure Those Wintertime Blues?
Moving Away from Fibromyalgia
Top Locations for FM Relief
Dealing with Dampness
In the News
House Passes Landmark Pain Care Policy Act
Author Seeks Interview Subjects
October is National Disability Awareness Month
Fibromyalgia AWARE Now Available in CVS Stores
Deals, Discounts and More
Artículos en Español
Conserva La Energía
5 Ideas para Incrementar, Manejar y Conservar la Energía
New Exercise Video for FM Patients (Introductory Price: $12.95 Regular Price: $19.95)