I received a lot of positive feedback from an article I wrote title You Think You have Fibromyalgia, What Should You Do? Readers also asked questions all pointing to one clear question: Now that I have fibromyalgia, what should I do? I am going to answer that question in a ten part series calledYou Have Fibro, Now What? This part of the series is about why keeping a food journal is good for fibromyalgia.
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As I stated in The Fibromyalgia Diet: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly certain foods can help ease the symptoms of fibromyalgia while other foods can trigger flares. Having a flare means you are experiencing an increase in symptoms. Flares can last hours, days, weeks, or months. Read more about flares and how to avoid them.
To avoid flares and ease your symptoms, eat the right kinds of foods and stay clear of the bad foods. Easier said than done, right? It is. The difficult part is finding the foods that trigger your flares. Each person is different, so finding those foods is essential. Keeping a food journal can help with finding those trigger foods.
First, start tracking your food each day.
Anything you eat or drink, write it down. All of it. Do not leave out anything. This is the most important part of finding out your body’s trigger foods.
Second, write down your symptoms for each day.
This is also important to establish the link between the foods and your symptoms. Take note of the symptom, time of the symptom, the severity of the symptom, and how long it lasts.
Third, analyze your journal.
Notice if there are any increase or new symptoms within hours or the following day of eating a certain food. Look for any patterns of repetition of symptoms when eating certain foods.
Take your food journal to your physician because they may also be able to help establish any links between the food your eating and the symptoms your experiencing.
After I was first diagnosed, I tracked my food intake and symptoms for about a week or so. My physician immediately noticed a link between dairy and gluten foods with my stomach pains. She strongly believed if I cut out these two foods, not only would my stomach pains ease, but so would my overall body pains. She was absolutely correct.
Years later, I’m still avoiding dairy and gluten foods as well as soda and sugary foods. It’s a bit harder to avoid the sugary foods during the holidays, but it gets easier each year.
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