If you haven't yet been to I dream of no ME as I am, then click on the link right now. The blog is both moving and inspirational, within minutes of reading you find yourself desperate to find an answer, or something that could possibly help people with ME.
The aim of this post isn't to overshadow our internet buddy's blog. But to let her know that her blog is an amazing achievement and that she shouldn't lose faith, even when things get a bit rubbish. There are people that you've never even met who care about you. That goes for you readers too.
What is Myalgic Encephalopathy?
According to the ME association, it goes by different names; Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome, and Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome, and it encompasses a myriad of symptoms that also occur in hypothyroidism, coeliac disease, lupus, lyme disease and other illnesses. To see the ME association's list of symptoms please click here.
As we've said before; we're not health practitioners, just people who like to research and help others, so if there is anything in this post that you think might help, have a chat with your qualified health professional to see what is suitable for you.
In our research we found a few things that might help:
Vitamins and probiotics
|image borrowed from geninv.net|
General supplements. It's been suggested that CFS patients may have lower vitamin levels than people who don't have CFS and positive results have been reported from the use of vitamin and mineral supplementation in patients with CFS.
|image borrowed from wellsphere.com|
Magnesium can be found in dark chocolate, leafy green vegetables, milk, spinach, peas and black eyed peas, click here for a comprehensive list of magnesium rich foods
Exercise therapy to reduce fatigue
|image borrowed from panoramaphysio.ca|
This meta-review of 5 studies found that fatigue and physical functioning were improved in CFS patients who received exercise therapy.
Graded Exercise Therapy (GET) was found to make significant improvements in measures of fatigue and physical function in three studies. Two also showed improvement in overall health and one in physiological measurements and symptoms. One of the studies compared different interventions to encourage graded exercise, and found benefits of GET when compared to standardised medical care for all outcomes (i.e. fatigue, pain, sleep, cognitive functioning, anxiety, depression)
Long chain Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids and Essential Fatty Acids
|Image borrowed from healthy-balanced-diet.com|
This study suggests that ME may be associated with persistent viral infection. Which is likely to impair the bodies ability to breakdown long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids. They suggest that treatment with virgin cold-pressed non-raffinated evening primrose oil would supply the body with Gamma Linolenic acid (an anti-inflammatory that can help autoimmune diseases) and other important fats, helping the body to make arachidonic acid a polyunsaturated omega 6, antioxidants and other goodies!
(If you're interested this study discusses clinical advantages of cold-pressed non-raffinated evening primrose oil, if you can't access the article try popping to a public library or university
library - they should have a subscription).
2 studies looked at the effect of supplementing Essential Fatty Acids and they showed an improvement in patient perception of symptoms, depression and a greater shift towards normal levels of cell fatty acid concentration.
Foods high in EFA's: Oily fish, flaxseed oil, grapeseed oil, hemp seeds, walnuts, brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, avocadoes, sesame seeds, pine nuts, pistachios, olives, olive oil, borage oil, evening primrose oil, pecans, almonds, peanuts, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
|Image borrowed from anxietyspecialist.co.uk|
CBT has been found to be beneficial to sufferers of CFS, for helping to maintain a positive outlook.
|image borrowed from this post @ amylynnsoaps.com that discusses how to select a massage therapist|
Massage therapy has been found to help with fatigue, pain, sleep, depression and a decrease in cortisol levels in the treatment group when compared with a control group.
In one study osteopathy was found to help the treatment group with fatigue, back pain, sleep, anxiety and cognitive function when compared with a control group.
(click here for the ref for osteopathy, cbt and massage therapy studies).