Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Dr. Oz and Fibromylagia

Has anyone else seen these Dr. Oz videos about fibromyalgia? I don't think they are new, maybe from 2012, but they seem to be making their rounds on the net lately:

Here are links to the clips:

Is it me or did he really explain nothing? He really just touches just too briefly on treatments, especially holistic treatments. And he calls it a disease, its not. Its an illness, a disorder, but not a disease. I felt the brain image thing was very confusing. Did that make sense to anyone else? I think an ENTIRE EPISODE should be focused on fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue, not just a few minutes, he really addressed nothing, and explained nothing.

I think this, from an article he wrote in 2009 for Opraph's O Magazinge, is a little more informative, but still he could devote a lot more to fibro:

What does everyone else think of Dr. Oz's coverage of fibromylagia?

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Veggie Burger Recipes!

This is a great resource for creating all natural healthy burger/meat alternatives. Often on Sundays I like to make a handful and keep them in the fridge all week to grab as a quick reheat meal. Often I will change the toppings I use to make it seem more like a different meal each night, simply using the burger as the basis.

My favorites are the black bean and mexican burgers, with a sour cream/jalepeƱo/lime topping, as well as the garbanzo bean burgers with mustard and jalepeƱos on top; and of course mashed up avocado on anything!!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Follow Up: Even More Celebrities with Fibromyalgia

In another follow up to my posts about celebrities coming forward with their struggles and successes with fibro, I found this slideshow highlighting the following celebrities as fellow fibromites:

  • Susan Flannery
  • Rosie Hamlin
  • Sinead O'Conner
  • MichaelJames Hastings

(The headline of this slideshow is a bit misleading as it says "5" celebrities but only sows 4....)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Yoga and Fibromylagia

Yoga has been a HUGE helper for me with keeping my fibro pains under control. I don;t think it was a coincidence that the same year I was diagnosed with fibro (Oct) I also had a New Year's resolution to try yoga (Jan) -- and I loved it from the start, so it was natural to keep in going once diagnosed. Here is a slideshow on WHY yoga helps with the pains:

Saturday, July 20, 2013

South Florida
Fibromyalgia Support Group

Next Meeting: Thursday, August 1, 2013
 6:30pm – 7:30pm

Pine Ridge Square
Inline Chiropractic Wellness Center
4621 N. University Drive
Coral Springs, FL 33067

Guest Speaker:
Bonnie Petty
Round Table Discussion
Founder of Fibro Meet Up

If your life has been touched by fibromyalgia directly or indirectly join in on the discussion. This is a support group of patients, family members and friends dedicated to learn about Fibromyalgia. Share your challenges, triumphs and tribulations with others in the fibromyalgia community

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Lifestyle Changes for Fibromylagia

I often talk about lifestyle changes and adjustments for helping manage fibro symptoms. I found this great link on detailing the top 10 lifestyle changes. I've highlighted the list below, but it really is worthwhile to read though the article with details and more links for each.

1. Pace Yourself
I have learned to do this, I am/was a type A personality pre-fibro, so was always on the go go go, but have learned now to balance activity (work, errands, dinner out with friends etc.) with periods of rest. This keeps me from fibro flares. Sometimes going out to dinner on a Friday night means not scheduling plans on the following Saturday for anything. Or dinner out on a Tuesday means not going out on Wednesday as well.

2. Holding a Job / Disability
This has been a struggle, but I have noticed having a job to go to helps keep my mind off the fibro for a few hours, and helps give me more purpose for the day.

3. Change Your Diet
Big proponent of this, less chemicals and processed foods, more fresh fruits and vegetables!

4. Exercise
I have settled on yoga for this, it really, really helps! It gently stretches my muscles and keeps them active, but its not too strenuous, and I can pace myself. I think the meditative part of yoga helps too, calm my mind, and even helps me sleep easier.

5. Focus on Better Sleep
I think my natural inclination has always been to be a night owl, but I've learned that maintaining proper sleep habits is an ESSENTIAL part of managing fibro. I try to start settling down by 9:00pm and start heading to bed @ 10pm, aiming to fall asleep no later than 11pm.

6. Learn Coping Skills
I've learned to accept my fibro, learn what I can do, and can't do, how to balance my social life with the fibro.

7. Little Things/Changes Can Have  a Big Impact
Foods, clothes, drinking lots of water. I've learned changing my diet helps, paying attention to how my clothes feel on and changing those if it makes me feel better, and drinking lots of water daily, all help me manage my fibro. IT really is amazing how different I feel on days that I drink a lot of water vs days I do not.

8. Surviving the Holidays
I order online for gifts (the amazon wish list is an AMAZING tool that everyone in my family now uses!) I always bring a dish/foods to get togethers that I know I can eat, and I usually try to eat a bit before I go to a get together just in case there are a lot of foods and dishes there that are on my no-no list.

9. Manage Stress
I've learned to realize what in life is worth worry about and getting upset over (not much is worth the effort and accompanying stress I've found!) and the meditation and deep breathing exercises from yoga helps calm my mind and eases stresses a lot too. I'll even listen to some calming music during times of stress, which helps refocus my energies.I'm a sucker for the Tibetan Bells music from yoga :)

10. Find Support
I have found a local support group as well as a few online that are amazing. To speak with others with the same struggles, and share stories and successes makes me feel less alone with my struggles. I highly recommend

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Follow up: Celebrities with Fibromyalgia - Captain Michael Hastings

As a followup to my post from 5-29-13

I have discovered another celebrity that struggles with fibromyalgia.

You may know him as the Navy “Captain Mike” from the popular series “The West Wing,” but Michael James Hastings creates more popularity by being a spokesman for fibromyalgia. He follows Dr. Teitelbaum's protocol with supplements and coupled with lifestyle changes and adjustments has found success in managing his fibro symptoms.

Here is the article I found highlighting Captain Mike

And here is a link to his website with extensive links and information:

This is an inspiration, and another step in the right direction seeing celebrities come forward with their fibro struggles, and supporting the focus on fibromyalgia and treatments.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Coconut Quinoa Pancakes

I also recently tried a recipe that I saw in Prevention magazine for Coconut Pancakes. I substituted quinoa flour for the whole wheat flour. It did give them a bit of the nutty quinoa flavor, but paired with the toasted coconut it was pretty tasty. I noticed I have some other gluten free flours in my pantry, I'll give one of those a whirl next time. I also substituted almond milk for the coconut milk since I had almond on hand. These were easy to make and I made a bunch to keep on hand in the fridge for a few days of easy grab and go breakfasts.

From Prevention Magazine, July 2013, page 77


Makes 10-12 pancakes


1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

1 cup flour (I used quinoa)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp baking soda

3/4 cup coconut milk (I used almond milk)
1/2 c. warm water
1.5 tsp honey
2 tsp vanilla extract

1.5 tsp oil

  • Toast the shredded coconut in medium skillet over medium heat, shaking frequently, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and baking soda in a bowl.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together milk, water, honey and vanilla extract. Stir into dry ingredients along with the toasted coconut to form a thin batter.
  • Heat skillet with oil (or used a griddle.) For each pancake pout 1/4 cup of the batter and spread with the back of a spoon until 4" in diameter. Cook until bubbles form, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip, cook 1 to 2 minutes. Serve with fruit.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Dough-Less Pizza Recipe (Gluten-Free!)

I recently tried a new recipe I found online, for a dough-less pizza. Now I looooove pizza and its one of my downfalls. I do ocassionaly order from Dominoes, as they DO offer a gluten-free crust option! Its good, like a thin-crust pizza. Anyhoo, so I came home one night and whipped up this dough-less pizza. I didn't have any spaghetti sauce, marinara or pizza sauce so I mixed together a can of diced tomatoes and a can of tomato paste for the sauce. I will say the pizza was DE-lish! But if you have any lactose intolerance, beware! The cheese-crust is vicious. I am thinking the cream cheese is the culprit, so I may try Neufechatel cheese next time instead of cream cheese.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Fibro-Friendly Kitchen and Pantry

I think I've finally reached the point of having a semi-decent healthy kitchen that I can work with. When first diagnosed with fibromyalgia and I started looking into how eating better would help with the fibro symptoms I was overwhelmed by all the changes needed. I understood the changes, they made sense, but to wake up one day and have such a sudden change in lifestyle was a hard change to adjust to, and hard to accomplish. But little by little, over the years, I've learned to make the changes, I now eat gluten free bread, and keep an extra loaf frozen in the freezer. I've found affordable, gluten free cracker alternatives to keep on hand. I've found fruits and vegetables to keep on hand that I know I snack on. I have a good stash of canned items just in case (diced tomatoes, beans, tuna - some good basics with few ingredients/additives) all my flours for baking are gluten free, as are my bread crumbs. My milk is almond milk (try it! I was skeptical at first, but  really like it, and it lasts much longer than regular milk!)

I have learned to shop more on the outer perimeters of the grocery store (fresh foods: produce, dairy, meats) and less on the inner aisles - processed boxed foods. So I finally feel I have a good basis in my kitchen for whipping up some healthy fibro friendly meals and snacks. It helps to have this basis as I often forget (thanks fibro fog!) what I have in the pantry, so to be able to open it and see healthy choices to work with is great.

I've also learned some quick and easy recipes to whip up, quick and easy go to recipes. When I get home from work I am hungry and tired so I need quick, easy and healthy!

I am not perfect, fatigue often gets the best of me, I do have some processed boxed foods, but I have found ones that work better for me (than say driving through Wendy's or McDonald's!) - the Near East Quinoa/Brown Rice is always an excellent go to and I have plenty of leftovers for future meals. I often toss in some shrimp for protein and extra flavor.

Here are some great resources for working towards your fibro friendly kitchen and pantry:

Captain Mike's Fibro Kitchen Blog: