As an increasing number of patients turn to alternative medicine to reduce stress and relieve chronic pain, there is some evidence to suggest that herbal remedies could actually help Fibromyalgia sufferers. Both the Fibromyalgia Association UK and the Fibro Action recommend herbal remedies to relieve some of the symptoms and side effects of the Fibromyalgia.
We have outlined four such herbs and supplements for you here:
No. 1 Ginkgo Biloba
Made from the leaves of the Ginko Biloba tree, this has been used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Its primary use being to treat blood disorders and improve memory, making this a top selling supplement in Europe and the US. It is its effect on blood circulation which makes this a recommendation for people with Fibromyalgia, with 25% of sufferers reporting poor circulation and the associated numbness and tingling.
No. 2 Valerian
A herbal remedy that has been in use for over 30 years, said to provide temporary treatment for sleep and mild anxiety problems. A number of studies have suggested that the herb helps treat insomnia and encourages better quality sleep, however studies into its effect on anxiety have produced mixed results. With many Fibromyalgia sufferers reporting sleep problems, it is hoped that Valerian might help them get a more restful night’s sleep and also feel more rested when awakening.
No. 3 – Pycnogenol
The trademark name of a supplement extracted from the bark of a tree known as Pinus pinasterpine, this may help to improve blood flow, stimulate the immune system and have antioxidant side effects. Fibro Action have said that its link to improved blood flow may help alleviate the poor circulation symptoms associated with Fibromyalgia.
No. 4 – SAMe or SAM (S-Adenosyl methionine)
A chemical that occurs naturally in the body and can be reproduced in the laboratory. It is not known exactly how SAM-e works in the body, but some believe it increases levels of serotonin and dopamine, altering mood and helping with restful sleep. Encouragingly Fibro Action have said there is evidence to suggest that SAMe may help with the depression and body tenderness associated with the Fibromyalgia, although further research is needed.
All of the above herbs and supplements require additional studies before they can be recommended as a specific treatment for fibromyalgia, whilst the NHS has stated that no herb or plant extracts have been found effective in the treatment of fibromyalgia.
Remember to always consult your doctor before taking any new herb or supplement.
We do not endorse any research, studies or sources mentioned within our blogs and comments. Furthermore, we do not endorse any medical advice provided, and would strongly recommend anyone seeking medical advice to contact their local healthcare provider.