Recovery Factors: My Favourite Supplement for Fibromyalgia

Recovery Factors is my favourite supplement for fibromyalgia.

Amino acid supplementation for fibromyalgia appears to be a useful treatment option.

I had only ever thought of one at a time, 5HTP for sleep, lysine for cold sores, acetyl l carinitine etc.

At the end of 2019 Dr Teitelbaum offered an opportunity to try a supplement that he and a fellow doctor had been finding helpful with their fibromyalgia patients.

As one of the lucky participants I received my bottles and started the trial eagerly.

I noticed that the ingredients label listed iron and an extensive list of amino acids.

Recovery factors supplement for fibromyalgia

Being an avid learner – I set about researching and found some interesting information.

“Patients with sleep disorders demonstrate a nutritional deficiency of tryptophan, choline and GABA. Fibromyalgia patients also have reduced blood levels of serotonin and 5-hydroxytryptophan.
A double-blind, randomized trial compared an amino acid based medical food with trazodone to study sleep latency and parasympathetic autonomic nervous system improvement in sleeping hours. The results showed improved sleep quality without morning grogginess along with improved nighttime parasympathetic activity with the use of the medical food.” http://www.archivesofmedicine.com/medicine/nutritional-management-of-fibromyalgia.php?aid=9131

We know sleep is huge in fibromyalgia. It is a massive perpetuating factor.

Amino acids can help everything, “From treating sleep disorders and energy deficits to nervous system and methylation factors that support proper neutralizing and elimination of toxins within the body.” https://www.living-smarter-with-fibromyalgia.com/treatment-for-fibromyalgia-amino-acids.html

An old article from Dr Teitelbaum states, “I recommend supplementation with all of the amino acids as opposed to using a single one by itself, as these supplies overall nutritional support and are less likely to cause a relative deficiency of other amino acids.” https://www.vitality101.com/health-a-z/Cfs_fm-amino_acids_low_in_fibromyalgia

recovery factors supplement for fibromyalgia

My experiment with Recovery Factors

The first few nights I took the full dose as recommended and slept like I was heavily sedated. When I woke my neck was very sore from the immobility and I had a severe headache.

After struggling through a few days feeling more and more lethargic, I emailed Dr Teitelbaum’s office asking if I should decrease the dose. Dr T himself replied that I should, and take the dose that works for me.

I reduced to half and continued to sleep better but less heavily. I noticed less gut issues, slightly less pain and some more energy.

The bottles lasted me longer due to my dosage, wanting to prolong it even more I dropped to two pills at bedtime only. I continued to sleep better.

March 2020 I ran out and then the lockdown happened in New Zealand. I ended up with no supplement, no physiotherapy, a lot of stress, no childcare and a new job. My sleep deteriorated. The migraines, of which I’d had two the previous month and one a year prior, escalated.

In June my doctor and I agreed I’d go back on Amitriptyline for a time and I’d order the recovery factors supplement which was now for sale.

July Update

My bottle arrived in much quicker timing than I expected, with the pandemic slowing things down and it already taking longer to get to New Zealand. So I was very happy.

When I began again, I started at two tablets per night, I take it right before bedtime, which is contrary to the dosing recommendations. But, as I found with low dose naltrexone, dosing is individual.

Between the tiny dose of Amitriptyline and Recovery Factors I am now sleeping again! I am even getting between 10-18% of deep sleep most of the time. Deep sleep is a big issue in fibromyalgia. And for this reason alone the nearly $100 NZD for the bottle and the delivery is worth every single cent. As I take three tablets a day a bottle lasts me about 2.5 months – so it is only around $40 a month. The value of a good quality multivitamin that does so much more than a multi can do.

In addition, for the first time in many years I have nearly optimal iron levels without iron injections. This is important for me as I tend to live at the very bottom of a very big range and I feel the effects (I get lethargic, fatigued and dizzy).

You can check out the Recovery Factors site, research and grab a bottle here.

Do always remember to check for interactions. My doctor deemed the doses of Recovery Factors and Amitriptyline suitable for me. You need to check your doses with your doctor.

What Life is Like for me Now

Recovery Factors helps me with sleep. The sleep leads to less pain and fatigue. Which in turn leads to better enjoyment of life, more ability to do what I want to do (higher functionality) and better sleep. It’s like a reversal of the vicious cycle of fibromyalgia. I am not healed, but I am doing more of what I want with less pain and fatigue.

I have managed to stop taking amitriptyline again and am taking three tablets of Recovery Factors at bedtime. This is great for me as I prefer not to be reliant on too much. My sleep is trying to normalise again after the amitriptyline.

I am currently working part-time, managing this blog, the Yoga for the Chronic Life virtual studio, and my three small children. In terms of exercise, I am walking around 10,000 steps each day, have worked up from 15 minutes per walks to around 40 minutes several times a week. I am only hampered by weather and needing help with the wee ones when we are out. It’s nothing short of breath taking.

Do remember this is all in conjunction with my whole of life protocol. Pacing, low dose naltrexone, healthy eating, yoga, meditation and reducing stress as possible.

Have you tried Recovery Factors? Please tell us how it goes for you.

Free Printables from Melissa vs Fibromyalgia Book

Did you know that I wrote a book (well, I’ve written two, Pregnancy and Fibromyalgia and Melissa vs Fibromyalgia: My Journey Fighting Chronic Pain, Chronic Fatigue and Insomnia)? It was a bucket list goal to write a book and a more recent life goal to write a book to share my experience of fibromyalgia in case it helps others.

In this book I provided templates and these are available in the free resources page (along with many other resources) that you can sign up for here.

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Affiliate notice: Please note that some of my links are affiliate links and I may make a commission if you purchase using my link at no extra cost to yourself. See my full disclosure here

Melissa vs Fibromyalgia book cover

These templates are all mentioned in my book Melissa vs Fibromyalgia: My Journey Fighting Chronic Pain, Chronic Fatigue and Insomnia. This book is everything that I have researched, trialed and experienced in seven years of actively fighting this illness and over a decade living with the symptoms of it. I wrote this book in the hope that it helps even one other person not lose so long to the pain and fatigue – I lost the entirety of my twenties until I realised that the only person who was going to fight this illness was myself. No doctor would take the lead here. I became my own researcher, advocate, scientist and lead carer in one. It has made all the difference.

My Sleep Diary

This is to help you to track your sleep and any supplements/medicines or sleep hygiene tips you try. You can find the template here. You can download and print it out and start using it today.

My Passion Worksheet

This takes you through questions like what do I really enjoy to do? and what would my ideal day look like? so that you can see how you can incorporate your passions into your new life. Find the template here.

My Supplement Log

So that you can track and log supplements you might decide to try. I find it really important to keep a list of those I’ve tried (because I forget) and to track how they might have helped me, because supplements can be costly so we want to be taking the most effective ones. Find it here.

My Support Worksheet

Support is vital to us as human beings and fibromyalgia can be isolating. In this sheet we work through our support options such as creating a plan for the harder days. I found it enormously helpful to have a pre-written plan for flare days in ascending order of ability so that I didn’t have to think about what to do (I tend to quietly panic when the pain gets severe). Find the template here.

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As I said above, these are available in the free Resources page that you can sign up for here, there are also several printable reports and other resources in here to help you on your journey.

 

I hope all of these resources help you in your fight.

 

 


For more printables and templates to fight fibromyalgia:

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For my free course You vs Fibromyalgia:

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Fibro Soothe: A Review

I have been given this product as part of a product review through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network. Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company. 

I was so excited to be given a chance to review Fibro Soothe because I have heard many great things about the ingredients and because I hadn’t yet tried fibro specific supplements like this.

When I was first diagnosed these sorts of things were just not available, especially here in New Zealand. So I have really enjoyed the proliferation of options.

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I was so happy to receive this, that I posted this picture on Twitter immediately!

Fibro Soothe contains Boswellia serrata Wokvel®, Turmeric Longvida®, DL-Phenylalanine, Ginger, Devils Claw, Ashwagandha, Bromelain, Papain, and Turmeric Powder. It is supposed to help with inflammation, pain and sleep.

Curcumin, the active ingredient in tumeric has long been known as a potent antiinflammatory, along with ginger. Perhaps less known, dl-phenylalanine, devils claw, ashwaghanda, bromelain and papain are also useful to promote pain relief and energy.

I have taken Curamin before (also sold by ProHealth), which contains Curcumin and a couple of other overlapping ingredients and found it to be quite useful for my neck, which is the pain I most struggle with. My neck is always tight and sore, and gets very stiff in the night and if I try to sit still for too long. It responds to ibuprofen, when none of my other pain does – which I think is why anti inflammatory supplements help.

There has been a lot going on for me, physically, with having a small baby. So it was both a good time and a rough time for trying a new treatment.

Having a baby, developing symphisis pubis disorder and a Fibromyalgia flare up all at once (all interrelated), I’ve been on more medicine than I’d like. Fibro Soothe helped me cut out the morning dose of ibuprofen, which removes the extra stress on my stomach.

The only negative I found from taking Fibro Soothe was trying to swallow three capsules in the morning, I found it difficult. So I now take my daily dose around lunchtime when it’s easier to take them. There isn’t a strong smell or taste, so that really helps.

I have found that supplements usually take six to eight weeks to truly see if it will work for you, so make sure you give it a good amount of time when trying new supplements.

I’ve been on it for about five weeks and will continue taking it. The effect on my neck alone solidifies this in my daily regimen. It’s important to remember that fighting Fibromyalgia requires an amalgamation of solutions, rather than one miraculous one.

Getting as much good sleep as I can, nutritious food, supplements, gentle exercise and rest are all part of my key lifestyle changes.

Some of the key supplements I love are:

Another thing to note, is that Pro Health has a wealth of articles about Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome available, so it’s worth spending some time going through their site.

Have you tried Fibro Soothe before? Did it help you? Is there any other supplements that really help you?