A Holistic Approach to Fibromyalgia

Holistic health focuses on the whole person rather than individual illness or specific body parts.

As fibromyalgia is a complex and poorly understood syndrome, with no defined cause, I have found that doctors are more inclined to just treat symptoms. Years ago I became disillusioned and weary of the medical approach of prescribing medication for symptoms, rather than trying to get to the root cause of various health problems, so I started taking more control of my own health journey (read more: Becoming Your Own Health Advocate). I want to share how I approach my health and fibromyalgia holistically.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying my approach will work for anyone else, let alone everyone else. We are all individuals with different ailments, pain levels and thresholds, environments, and situations. I am just sharing my approach to managing my fibromyalgia to minimize flares and the disruption to daily life. And first, you have to understand what I mean by “holistic.”

“Holistic health is actually an approach to life. Rather than focusing on illness or specific body parts…[it] considers the whole person.”

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What Is a Fibromyalgia Flare?

Flare-ups can happen without warning.

We’re in the midst of a global pandemic. There is a Sahara dust storm that made its way all the way to the U.S., triggering all kinds of reactions. It seems like it is always cold, flu, strep, or allergy season here in Texas. Even before coronavirus, I religiously wiped down grocery carts and washed/sanitized my hands constantly when in public places. No matter the circumstance – weather changes, travel, exposure to other people and their germs, stress, staying in, eating out – all of those things can add up to a compromised immune system. So when I start feeling like I am coming down with something, I have to pause and think – Am I getting sick? Or is it just a Fibromyalgia Flare?

“Flare-ups can happen without warning and are mostly likely to occur if a person with fibromyalgia is stressed or under a lot of pressure.

A flare-up can last anywhere from a few days to weeks at a time.”

From How to Recognize a Fibro Flare
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Clean Eating: Red, White and Blueberry Smoothie

Triple Berry Smoothie Bowl Recipe

In America, this is the weekend that we celebrate Independence Day, typically with cookouts and fireworks. In the days of Coronavirus, our family won’t be celebrating in the traditional ways. Since late March, we have been doing our best to #StayAtHome. This year that means no BBQs with friends or watching fireworks with big crowds. It will be a simple BBQ at home for the family.

During quarantine I have been practicing self-care with proper eating and extra walks with the dog to get out of the house. These habits also help me to keep the fibromyalgia flare-ups to a minimum. The neighborhood has gotten a bit boring, so this past week I discovered some lovely nearby walking trails. After a particularly long walk this morning, I made this Red-White-and-Blue Triple-Berry-Coconut smoothie bowl that I thought would make a nice 4th of July treat!

Triple Berry Red, White, and Blueberry Smoothie Bowl
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Clean Eating: Peppermint Mocha Mousse

It’s the holidays! It’s so easy to overindulge at this time of year. Even just a nibble here or there adds up. I ❤️ sweets but I try my best not to eat too many at the holidays, so I don’t derail my healthy habits. With my fibromyalgia I have said for years if I eat crap, I feel like crap. The easiest way to avoid the temptations is to make sure I have a little something to treat myself. 😉

This recipe is so simple and you can make it look elegant with a few toppings. And by using full-fat coconut milk, you are getting added health benefits for your heart and immune system. The MCTs found in this milk are good for your gut and the good fats and protein combination help satisfy your appetite.

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