By David Blyweiss, M.D., Advanced Natural Wellness
January 25, 2017
- Why does your body ache all of the time?
- Boost your vitamin D levels to slash pain levels
- Get more magnesium to soothe your aching body
When you wake up in the morning, do you have to move around for awhile to get rid of morning stiffness?
As the day wears on, do aches, pains and tender points plague you?
Do you get headaches, feel fatigued or suffer from poor sleep?
You may have been told these symptoms are “all in your head.” Well, I’m here to tell you that they probably aren’t.
These issues can affect anyone. They could even be a sign that you’re suffering from a fibromyalgia like syndrome.
However, fibromyalgia is one of those elusive disorders that very few medical professionals acknowledge as a real disease, let alone know what to do with. Others overuse the term in an effort to account for non-specific symptoms that they have no other explanation for.
Well, if you suffer from unexplained pain, fatigue, stiffness, tingling, brain fog and other symptoms, it may not matter whether you give it a name or not. The cause might be the same, regardless of how you look at it.
It could be as complex as identifying and ridding your body of specific stressors, toxins, inflammatory foods, allergens and multiple nutrient deficiencies or as simple as addressing two of the most common nutritional deficiencies that are surprisingly effortless and inexpensive to resolve.
Boost Your Vitamin D Levels to Slash Pain Levels
Interestingly, vitamin D deficiency causes weakness and cramps in the muscles. It also contributes to vague aches and pains, fatigue and can even make your bones hurt. So it’s no wonder that low levels of vitamin D are common in patients who suffer chronic pain or have fibromyalgia.
But guess what happens when people plagued with general (non-specific) pain – or even fibromyalgia – boost their vitamin D levels?
Their pain levels improve. Their energy levels and physical strength increase. They wake up refreshed and get moving around more quickly. Overall, they show improved physical function and fewer tender points.
Now if you think your chances of developing vitamin D deficiency is low, I’ve got some news for you. As long as you’re living and breathing, you’re at risk running low on vitamin D.
First off, if you live north of Atlanta it’s literally impossible to get enough vitamin D from the sun between the months of October and March.
Secondly, even if you live in the south, chances are good that you slather on sunscreen before you head outdoors. This reduces the amount of vitamin D your body is able to produce.
As a result, about three out of four people here in the U.S. have insufficient levels of vitamin D. You could easily be one of them and not even know it.
On the bright side, it’s easy enough to get your vitamin D levels tested. Just ask your doctor for a 25-hydroxy vitamin D test, or a 25(OH)D for short. It isn’t harmful in the least. All it involves is a common blood test. I suggest you have your doctor include this test in your next blood panel. Adding a PTH (Parathyroid hormone) and 1,25 Vitamin D level is an even better test with more information in the same tubes of blood.
The standard cut-off for deficiency is usually 20 ng/ml concentrations of 25-hydroxy vitamin D. But that’s very controversial. Many experts, including myself, believe the absolute minimum deficiency point should be set at 30 ng/ml.
If your levels are 31 to 40 ng/ml, supplement with 5,000 IU of vitamin D3 in the cholecalciferol form (with Vitamin K2 formulated in the pill or liquid if possible) daily for three months then retest. If they’re lower than that, take at least 8,000 IU each day and retest in three months. If your numbers are greater, (meaning you are not insufficient) 2,000-4,000 iu daily should help you maintain at least the minimal sufficient levels. Shoot for a total of 60-75 ng/ml, especially if you’ve been diagnosed with an autoimmune issue.
Get More Magnesium to Soothe Your Aching Body
Magnesium deficiency is another widespread problem afflicting the health of Americans. Upwards of three out of every four people may not be getting enough of this mineral in their diets. A mineral that is critical in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body…the relaxation mineral. And it could be affecting your pain levels.
It’s common for people with low levels of magnesium to experience muscle pain and cramps. Weakness, fatigue and headaches are also associated with inadequate magnesium levels. Furthermore, people with fibromyalgia often have low levels of this mineral in their bodies…and are recommended to take a specific type, magnesium malate with any other replenishment protocols.
When fibromyalgia patients supplement with as little as 600 mg. of magnesium daily, their fibromyalgia scores often show improvement. This includes levels of pain, function, stiffness and fatigue.
But that’s not all. It also decreases the number of tender points. And those that don’t completely fade away are less tender than before supplementation.
This makes soaking in a warm Epsom Salt bath a perfect remedy for your aches and pains. Not only do these salts help relieve soreness, they also flood your body with magnesium sulfate that gets absorbed into your body through your skin. Just add two cups to your bathwater.
Finally, I cannot stress how important it that you exercise. Even if it’s the last thing you want to do when you’re hurting, a gentle ongoing movement program can work wonders when it comes to easing pain and boosting your energy levels.
Yilmaz R, et al. Efficacy of vitamin D replacement therapy on patients with chronic nonspecific widespread musculoskeletal pain with vitamin D deficiency. Int J Rheum Dis 2016 Nov 11. Epub 2016 Nov 11.
Shipton EA, et al. Vitamin D and Pain: Vitamin D and Its Role in the Aetiology and Maintenance of Chronic Pain States and Associated Comorbidities. Pain Res Treat 2015 19;2015:904967.
Ginde AA, et al. “Demographic differences and trends of vitamin D insufficiency in the US population, 1988-2004.” Arch Intern Med. 2009;169(6):626-3
Rosanoff A, et al. Suboptimal magnesium status in the United States: are the health consequences underestimated? Nutr Rev 2012;70(3):153-64.
Bagis S, et al. Is magnesium citrate treatment effective on pain, clinical parameters and functional status in patients with fibromyalgia? Rheumatol Int. 2013 Jan;33(1):167-72.
Bidonde J, et al. Aquatic exercise training for fibromyalgia. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014 Oct 28;(10):CD011336.
If your pain intensity makes exercising difficult, try programs like yoga or tai chi that focus on gentle stretching. Water exercises are also ideal when it comes to improving symptoms related to fibromyalgia and chronic pain.