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  • Scott Adams
    Scott Adams

    Elimination Diet May Ease Fibromyalgia

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Celiac.com 01/14/2002 - Researchers led by Dr. Joel S. Edman of the Center for Integrative Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania recently conducted a small and preliminary study that suggests that people with fibromyalgia may experience reductions in their symptoms if they eliminate one or more foods from their diet. The results were presented in October 2001 at the annual meeting of the American College of Nutrition in Orlando, Florida. In the study researchers reviewed the medical charts of 17 fibromyalgia patients who agreed to eliminate items such as corn, wheat, dairy, citrus, soy and nuts from their diets for at least two weeks. After the elimination of the foods, nearly half of the patients reported a significant reduction of pain, and 76% reported a reduction in other symptoms such as bloating, heartburn, headache, fatigue, and breathing difficulties. Two patients, however, reported an increase in symptoms.

    After the two-week period the patients were re-introduced to the foods one at a time every 2-3 days, and many of their symptoms returned. The most common problem-causing foods for the patients in the study were corn, wheat, dairy, citrus and sugar. Dr. Edman emphasized that the findings of the study are preliminary and more research in this area needs to be done.


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    I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2003. I suffered for many years as was told that the pain and migraines were all in my head and that there was nothing wrong... for ever test came back 'normal' after years of suffering a neurologist finally listed to what I was saying and had me reevaluated and then I was diagnosed.... I have been off my meds now going on two years for I could not even hold a simple conversation and I am a single parent with four children and this was not working for me.... I do take vitamins and minerals, I seem to be doing ok. Ever so often I lapse feeling very tired and I hurt all over. A simple hug hurts. Not to mention the migraines that come with it and these have put me in the emergency begin for relief. On top of all this I am also allergic to sulfa drugs and products with sulfa, alsufama and the like. I will be trying this Gluten-free idea and see what happens.

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    As a fibromyalgia patient when I first saw my integrated doctor, she put me on an elimination diet along with a rice-based shake supplement. I didn't notice any major change in my health. Recently, however, I've been eating paleo. Lapsing into grains for me resulted in a reappearance of symptoms. So I've reverted to rice. Sad to say, I had a different, but still negative reaction. With elimination diets I would caution to eliminate some foods that are considered typically safe foods.

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  • About Me

    Celiac.com's Founder and CEO, Scott was diagnosed with celiac disease  in 1994, and, due to the nearly total lack of information available at that time, was forced to become an expert on the disease in order to recover. Scott launched the site that later became Celiac.com in 1995 "To help as many people as possible with celiac disease get diagnosed so they can begin to live happy, healthy gluten-free lives."  In 1998 he founded The Gluten-Free Mall which he sold in 2014. He is co-author of the book Cereal Killers, and founder and publisher of Journal of Gluten Sensitivity.

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