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Fibromyalgia and nutrition, what do we know?


Many people suffer from fibromyalgia (FM) without an effective treatment. They do not have a good quality of life and cannot maintain normal daily activity. Among the different hypotheses for its ethiopathophysiology, oxidative stress is one of the possibilities. Non-scientific information addressed to patients regarding the benefits of nutrition is widely available, and they are used to trying non-evidenced strategies. The aim of this paper is to find out what we know right now from scientific studies regarding fibromyalgia disease and nutritional status, diets and food supplements. A systematic search has been performed on Medline with a wide range of terms about these nutritional issues. The search has been made during 2009, for articles published between 1998 and 2008. Target population: people suffering from FM. Vegetarian diets could have some beneficial effects probably due to the increase in antioxidant intake. There is a high prevalence of obesity and overweight in patients, and weight control seems to be an effective tool to improve the symptoms. Some nutritional deficiencies have been described, it is not clear whether they are directly related to this disease or not. About the usefulness of some food supplements we found very little data, and it seems that more studies are needed to prove which ones could be of help. Dietary advice is necessary to these patients to improve their diets and maintain normal weight. It would be interesting to investigate more in the field of nutrition and FM to reveal any possible relationships.

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This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors. We thank Professor Casimiro Javierre and Ramon Segura, from University of Barcelona, for their help and advice during all the revision process to write this article. We are very grateful also to Rebecca Jeffree for her help in the linguistic revision of the text.

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Correspondence to Laura-Isabel Arranz.

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Arranz, LI., Canela, MÁ. & Rafecas, M. Fibromyalgia and nutrition, what do we know?. Rheumatol Int 30, 1417–1427 (2010).

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  • Fibromyalgia
  • Nutrition
  • Diet
  • Antioxidants
  • Nutritional supplementation