How to fight FM naturally, with herbs and supplements

Jacob Teitelbaum, MD, reports that symptoms decreased and quality of life improved for 91 percent of his FM study subjects while they received nutrition- and supplement-focused treatment. His anti-FM arsenal:

  • For disordered sleep: valerian (Valeriana officinalis), 180-800 mg at bedtime.

  • For hormonal deficiencies: DHEA, 5-50 mg/day, ginseng (Panax ginseng), 100-200 mg/day, and vitamin B5, 500-1,000 mg 2x/day.

  • For nutritional support: magnesium glycinate, 200 mg/day; malic acid, 900-1,200 mg/day; zinc, 15 mg/day; GTF chromium, 200-250 mcg/day; evening primrose oil, 500-6,000 mg/day; fish oil, 5,000 mg/day; and B-complex, 50 mg/day.

James A Duke, PhD, one of the world's leading herb experts and former chief ethnobotanist at the USDA, suggests his top four for fibro:

  • Ginger (Zingiber officinale), 1-2 grams/day

  • Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus), 2-3 grams root powder/day

  • DGL licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), 4 grams root powder/day

  • Devil's claw (Harpagophytum procumbens), 4.5 grams/day

Cass Ingram, DO, co-author of Supermarket Remedies (Knowledge House, 1998), says, "Oregano oil has been effective against the mycotoxins and pain associated with fibromyalgia." Follow label directions, or try 1 to 2 drops under the tongue twice a day. According to a review of the most recently published research, here's what reduces symptoms best:

  • Chlorella (Chlorella pyrenoidosa), 10 grams/day

  • Collagen hydrolysat food supplement, dosage not specified

  • Wild yam (Dioscorea villosa) plus aloe vera gel extract (Aloe barbadensis), dosage not specified

  • Melatonin, 3-5 mg two hours before bedtime

Sources: Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 2001, vol. 7, no. 3; Phytotherapy Research, 2000, vol. 14, no. 3; Cranio: The Journal of Craniomandibular Medicine, April 2000; Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science: The Official Journal of the Pavlovian Society, 1998, vol. 33, no. 1; Maturitas, 2002, vol. 41, suppl. 1.

—J.J.G.