Supplements and Fibromyalgia – Are They Safe?

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Many of the symptoms of fibromyalgia can be linked to some sort of deficiency. In a scramble to find a way to relieve those painful body aches, we make a bee line for the vitamin section and load up on all the supplements we can find. But what is in those little pills that we think we so desperately need? Does any consumer know what’s really in them? Most likely, no, we don’t. With laws so loosely regulating supplements, if at all, how can we be sure to know the safe ones from the dangerous ones? Here is a guide for supplement safety.

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Disclosure: I get commissions for purchases made through links in this post, but these are products I recommend and have verified and/or used.

 

Supplements and Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia symptoms can be relieved using all natural remedies. One of the parts of the natural remedies is supplemental intake. There are six supplements that can be used to help fibromyalgia. There are:

  1. Vitamin D: fights pain and fatigue
  2. Fish oil: anti-inflammatory properties
  3. SAMe: improves immune function
  4. Ribose: relaxes and releases tight muscles
  5. Magnesium: helps muscle spasms, weakness, and back pain
  6. Brown Seaweed Extract: fights chronic pain

According to the article, The 6 Best Supplements for Fibromyalgiait is possible to take too much and can have side effects. Discuss all supplement intake with your doctor and verify the right dosage, what time of the day to take it, side effects, and how it will react with any medications you may be taking.

 

But are supplements safe?

Supplements and fibromyalgia go hand in hand, but precaution should be taken. Knowing their origins and other useful information is helpful in making the decision to take supplements or not.

Anahad O’Connor wrote an article in November 2013 regarding the true ingredients of supplements in the article Herbal Supplements Are Often Not What They SeemIn the article, O’Connor revealed that DNA tests have proven that supplements do not contain what they claim to contain. In one study, researchers gathered several different products from different stores throughout Canada and the United States for DNA testing. The results were staggering.

 

What is really in supplements?

In the study, two bottles of St. John’s wort (used to treat depression and largely popular with fibromyalgia patients) were found to contain rice and laxative. Other supplements contained fillers such as soybean, soy, wheat and black walnut. These ingredients may not sound threatening, but for people with a nut, soy, or wheat allergies, it is deadly.

The article also stated,

Of 44 herbal supplements tested, one-third showed outright substitution, meaning there was no trace of the plant advertised on the bottle – only another plant in its place.

 

How is it legal to mislabel?

The Food and Drug Administration requires all products to be tested by the company to ensure safety, but it’s not enforced. As O’Connor states, all supplements goes by an honor code, and are deemed safe until proven unsafe for the consumer.

Unlike prescription drugs, supplements are generally considered safe until proved otherwise.

 

The Back Story on Supplements

The facts in this clip are true, and taken from Adam Ruins Everything, a Tru TV series. The facts from the entire episode are sourced in the upper right corner of the screen or you can find them here.

 

How to be more aware

Even though I consulted with my primary care physician prior to adding these supplements to my daily remedy plan, there are still safety guidelines that should be followed when buying supplements.

The article, Buying Supplements: Follow These Safety Guidelines by FibroDaze, lists safety tips and precautions to take when buying supplements. There is also a website listed in the article that you can check if your current supplements are safe to ingest.

 

My supplement plan

After checking with the USP Verified Dietary Supplements for the supplement that received the USP Verified Mark, I decided to continue to take my supplements. It is closely regulated by my physician, and if any side effects did occur, I would stop immediately.

In my natural remedy plan for chronic pain, I stated that I take the following supplements:

 

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Brandi

I'm Brandi, follower of Christ, wife to an amazing, supportive husband, blessed mother to four sweet children, and a fellow spoonie. Facebook-+-Twitter-+-Instagram

5 thoughts on “Supplements and Fibromyalgia – Are They Safe?

  • May 27, 2015 at 12:37 pm
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    I noticed that not eating meat helps with my symptoms, so I've been vegetarian/mostly vegan for almost a year. To fill in any gaps in my diet I take a vegan calcium supplement, D3, B complex and K2. I think the most important for me though is the B complex, it helps with any pain induced anxiety. Reply
  • June 29, 2015 at 6:15 pm
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    Thank you so much for sharing my post. It is very kind and generous of you. I hope you are doing well. Reply
    • June 30, 2015 at 8:58 am
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      You're welcome! I'm hanging in there. Reply
  • September 13, 2015 at 5:03 am
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    I am a fellow chronic illness/pain sufferer and take vitamin supplements to manage my illness to a certain degree. Some fillers in vitamin supplements have in the past triggered an allergic reaction in me. Now I am careful with what I buy. Thanks for sharing this post. Love your blog! Reply
    • September 13, 2015 at 11:46 am
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      Thank you! Yes, it's good to take precautions even with vitamins. The hidden culprits are the fillers. Reply

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