A: This is definitely a topic that's coming up a lot. So far, we don't have enough research to know for sure what's happening in these cases. I suspect we've got a few things happening:
- A lot of us have sensitivities to gluten and/or other foods, which can cause their own set of symptoms or exacerbate fibromyalgia/chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms. For people in this category, cutting out the problem food may help alleviate symptoms, but likely won't relieve them completely.
- Some people with severe food intolerance symptoms may be misdiagnosed as having fibromyalgia/chronic fatigue syndrome, so when they eliminate the food their symptoms all clear up.
- It's possible that in some people food sensitivities can contribute to central sensitization, which is believe to be a key component of these conditions, and that eliminating the problem foods can put them into remission.
Since this is still a big gray area, we have no idea which category, if any, we may fit into -- so I think it's important for all of us to go through an elimination diet to see what food issues we may have. Also, as I learned from experience, it's probably smart to repeat the diet every few years. The first time I did it, I found nothing. However, a couple of years later I developed gluten intolerance.
For me, cutting out gluten hasn't impacted my fibromyalgia symptoms -- it only cleared up my gluten-related symptoms, which were digestive issues, mouth sores, intense fatigue and narcolepsy symptoms. Do you have food sensitivities? Find out:
What's your experience with eliminating gluten or other foods from your diet? What do you think is behind some people's dramatic food-related improvements? Leave your comments below!
Learn more or join the conversation!
- Your Diet for Managing Symptoms
- READERS RESPOND: Elimination Diet Experiences
- Food of the Week Series
- Gluten Free With Fibromyalgia Series
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