Products

Free Sample of Opti:5 Gel for Joint Pain

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I have just been informed of this free sample offer. This gel may be worth a try for joint pain but always seek medical advice first. Their website lists a 200ml tube for £24.95 and the ingredients are: Aqua, 1,3-Butylene Glycol, N-Acetyl Glucosamine, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Arnica motana extrazt, Rosa canina extract, Hyaluronic Acid, Propylene Glycol, Menthol, Polysorbate-20, Benzyl Alcohol, Dehydroaacetic acid, Benzoic acid, Sorbic Acid, Tocopherol, Potassium Hydroxide, Cl 42090.

As I say with all freebies I am not affiliated with this company in any way, nor do I benefit from anyone taking up the offer. I also always mention it isn’t really free, its a trade: Your details for a free sample, so consider if it is worth giving away your personal data before you scramble to fill in the form. If anyone has any success with any of these freebies please let me know as I can share it with everyone through our helpfull products section.

The link for the freebie is here. This takes you to there website where the freebie is displayed as a large graphic on the right hand side column.


My Manuka Honey update 1 week on

This article is specificly a progress report on my first week taking Manuka Honey after my article Manuka Honey – The Bees Knees?

To start of I would like to say that taking Manuka Honey is hardly any problem at all, as Honey goes its lovely and I certainly haven’t had to spread it on toast or mix it in to food. In fact I actually feel like Winnie-the-Pooh sat there eating honey, something I could get quite used to and I’m sure many of you could too. It’s certainly nothing like taking extracted Aloe Vera which is a rather unique experience and I still enjoy watching the faces of innocent victims who I may have convinced to try some of that.

The positive side

Anyway I digress as ususal. The first three days of taking 5ml of Honey at night were really quite good, I simply had three good days. Now although its rare to have three good days I can not make any assurances it was down to the Honey. The effects felt were an increase in energy and a slight decrease of pain, fatigue and fog. Now say for a moment this was the Honey, I could say that it was more effective than any drug other than Morphine and no drug for Fibro I have taken has been responsible for this scale of improvement. However I can not say this is down to the Manuka Honey, without a proper double blind clinical trial I would not say the Honey is beneficial or push the taking of it. All you can hope for is for me to say something like “I think its worth a try as it could have been responsible for an improvement in me and my great uncle” however we are no means there yet.

The Honey also seemed to have an effect on Morphine withdrawal which is surprising as according to my specialists they don’t know of anything that can truly help in that department. What seemed to happen was a delay to withdrawal, in fact I actually accidentally did not take any Oramorph for 12 hours by accident, this is because I am used to letting my body tell me when it needs morphine as I’m trying to cut down unsuccessfully (but that’s another story.)

The negative side

Unfortunately after three days there was a change, now I have to say at this point I had been advised to increase from 5ml to 10ml a day which I wish I had not done as the increase could also have caused the following problems. Firstly was a change in the effects on morphine withdrawal, Instead of seeing the warning signs I simply didn’t see any, I then hit a big withdrawal wall as if I had been ignoring it for an hour or too. So the a Honey was possibly responsible for increasing the onset in severity of withdrawal. I then found I was having to take quite large doses to rescue myself, something I’m not entirely happy with. Also I have been getting headaches mainly in the evening a few hours before I’m due my next dose. Now this could be because I’m taking it every 24 hours instead of 12 but I am concerned its having an impact on my blood sugar. I get headaches quite a bit and they are normally attributable to a cause, perhaps I have had more sugar in previous days and suddenly stopped (occasional sour worms sweet habit), perhaps I had had too much sugar, a lack of caffeine, dehydration etc etc. So I am quite sensitive to things like that, when I guess the cause right I can eliminate the headache in as little as 10 minutes but sometimes it can last hours after trying everything. In this case I have decide to reduce back down to 5ml and if it continues I’m going to monitor blood pressure and blood sugar levels more as its a little concerning.

So overall in week one it’s been a mixed bag, a very good start to the week but not such a great ending. As I’ve said I have no idea if this is down to the Honey one bit but as people experienced with Fibro will say we know something is responsible for changing something to our normal balance. It’s made things a little more unpredictable and I can just tell there is something going on in my body that’s new. So I’m going to continue with 5ml once a day, I have two Jars and I will see them through as long as side effects are mild or moderate and I will report back. I certainly feel I need to give it more time, perhaps I’m just adjusting to it, perhaps I was fighting one of the many cold viruses going round my family at the moment, who knows. But as ever I will keep you posted.

Product Information

I am taking 5ml of 12+TA “ManukaPharm” Manuka Honey each night

Have you tried a Manuka a Honey?

Do you have experience taking Manuka Honey for CFS/ME/Fibro or any other condition? If so I would appreciate your comments, you can comment in the box under every post, we will never ever ever pass your email address onto anyone and just keep a look out for a confirmation email in your inbox or junk if your a first time poster.


Manuka Honey – The Bees Knees?

Manuka honey has been recommended by an extended family member with Diagnosed M.E. as I have been bought two jars and a skin cream its probably worth me trying it out. I will be taking about 5ml of 12+TA “ManukaPharm” Manuka Honey a day while not changing medication within my review period. For information my other medication is Amitryptilyne 50mg/day, Duloxetine 60mg/day, Vitamin D 25mcg, Testosterone (gel) 50mg/day, Oramorph average 75mg/day, Buprenorphine 10mcg/hr & Topical Dovobet when required for Psorasis.

My family member has cited a reduction in pain and fatigue after taking Manuka honey so I’m going to see if there is any noticeable difference in my condition. My attitude towards it is sceptical with a small dose of hope, obviously this is hardly a scientific test but it will be interesting to see. My family member is going on a cruise soon that he believes he would have never attempted without the benefits the honey has brought to him. Most people with M.E./CFS/Fibromyalgia will say they would try anything to get some relief and I am no different. After doing some research this is what I have found:

About the honey itself

Manuka honey is mainly produced in New Zealand where Bee’s only collect pollen from the indigenous Manuka bush (Leptospermum Scoparium) in controlled environments. Since it has become popular Manuka is now being grown in other countries including the UK. The honey being sold as medically beneficial is referred to as being “active” in that it contains active enzymes that continue to react chemically within the Honey. This is measured in laboratory tests and is called the UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) or TA (Total Activity).i was surprised to learn that the honey is licensed by the NHS in the UK for the treatment of MRSA for cancer patients since 2004. In 2010, the scientific steering committee of the US National Cancer Institute approved a proposal for the use of manuka honey for the reduction of inflammation of the oesophagus associated with chemotherapy.

Obviously they honey is cited as beneficial in a number of other areas by alternative health practitioners, these areas include treatment of bacterial infection, treatment of inflammation, would healing, high cholesterol, diabetes, cancer, a variety of ENT (Ear Nose & Throat) problems, eczema, acne, gastrointestinal problems and even reduction of plaque in the mouth. Research on these areas is not as detailed but some evidence is out there. Components of the honey include Hydrogen Peroxide which has an antibiotic quality, Methylglyoxal (MG) which is antibacterial and comes from the conversion of another compound – dihydroxyacetone – that is found in high concentration in the nectar of manuka flowers. Researchers into the effects of honey on bacteria have observed changes in the lengths of bacterial cells, cells bursting open, and changes in the appearance of the DNA inside the cells which could of course bring benefits to the patient. Honey can also benefit the skin because its effect of Osmosis which can alter hydration in cells themselves bringing particular benefit to skin when changes in moisture levels of skin cells can be so important.

A word of warning however, through my research I have come across various scams in relation to Manuka Honey. In some cases cheap honey is being sold as Manuka Honey when it isn’t. In others Manuka Honey has been cooked or heated to produce a high UMF rating so watch out for high ratings too.

I will report back my findings after taking Manuka Honey over a period of time to see if it has any noticeable effect. I will also be testing a Manuka Honey Skin Cream on Psoriasis that I will discuss in a separate article. Has anyone tried Manuka Honey hoping for health benefits? What were your experiences? I would really like to hear your comments that can be left under any article or page, just remember to check for the confirmation email or your comments will not be authorised.

Further Reading

“‘Bug busting’ properties of honey assessed” on the NHS choices website published March 18 2013
The Effect of New Zealand Kanuka, Manuka and Clover Honeys on Bacterial Growth Dynamics and Cellular Morphology Varies According to the Species” on PLoS ONE Published online February 13 2013
Manuka honey is the bees knees” on the independent.co.uk published online May 26 2009
Manuka Honey on the webmd.com website
Stung by fraudsters: How cheap honey is being sold as ‘liquid gold’ manuka variety at £45 a jar” on the Daily Mail website published August 25th 2013
Manuka Honey Ratings Explained” on the greenbayharvest.co.uk website
Harnessing honey’s healing power” on the BBC News website published online June 8th 2004


Free Sample of “Gloves in a Bottle” Dry Skin Lotion

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I thought I would share another freebie that has been brought to my attention. Skin complaints often go hand in hand with Fibromyalgia, CFS & ME as we seem to be super sensitive everywhere else why shouldn’t the bodies largest organ have its fair share of problems too?

This skin lotion may be worth a try. As I say with all freebies I am not affiliated with this company in any way, nor do I benefit from anyone taking up the offer. I also always mention it isn’t really free, its a trade: Your details for a free sample, so consider if it is worth giving away your personal data before you scramble to fill in the form. If anyone has any success with any of these freebies please let me know as I can share it with everyone through our helpfull products section.

A personal update from me: The past month has been a big battle for me, I can not pull my sleeping back round from my usual “awake midnight until 6am and sleep the rest of the time.” This means I’m almost always asleep when anything is actually going on in the world and when I’m awake I am totally fogged out and next to useless, sitting up and writing seems a world away at the moment. I am also trying to reduce my morphine intake as over the summer I threw away my 1/3rd reduction I managed last September to May and shot straight up to 100mg+ a day. So apologies to you all for no posts and to people who have not had replies to emails, its nothing personal, you have just emailed a “fibrozombie.”

Click here to go to their site for the free sample


Elizabeth McSweeney e-books now available on Kindle, Kobo & Smashwords

As the title suggests all five volumes of the Elizabeth McSweeney “Fibromyalgia: Road to Recovery” books are now available on Kindle, Kobo & Smashwords. They are currently £1.99 for Fibromyalgia Awareness Week and the links for all the different formats are available from our Ebooks Section or at the bottom of this post.

Author Elizabeth McSweeney suffered from the debilitating pain and fatigue, associated with the condition, for seven years before finding her own path to recovery. These volumes represent four years of research including current medical papers (referenced), as well as results from her own original ethnographically styled survey, disseminated through UK Fibromyalgia Association. Each volume contains contributions from over forty other individual’s suffering from the condition, including ‘top tips’ for symptom management and daily coping.

Elizabeth says, “I’m not saying you can ‘cure’ yourself in three days, but these are the healing principles and daily protocol I follow to maintain a pain free, medication free and ‘fibro’-free life. I believe the false meme that ‘fibromyalgia is for life’ is causing unnecessary suffering, and my intention is to offer hope and support to anyone taking their own first steps towards recovery”.

More about Elizabeth and her books can be found in our Ebooks Section after I recently updated it after getting in contact with her through Twitter. You can also follow her on twitter here.

Buy now links

The books on Kindle
The books on Kobo
The books on Smashwords


Protected: Free Sample of Elmore Oil

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Test your Vitamin D for £25 at home

As the title suggest you can now get your Vitamin D levels tested privately for £25 and you can do it at home then send it off by post for the results.

Background

I have been inundated with comments in response to my article “Vitamin D Deficiency” posted on the 21st of May and have heard from a lot about people with low Vitamin D levels and have even been sent research suggesting a link to Fibromyalgia. Within these comments someone informed me of a Vitamin D test available in the USA and I asked if there was one available for people in the UK. I would like to credit Charlene Sphon for the link she sent me for a Vitamin D test in the UK so we have her to thank for this great bit of information. In my original post I said that many people in the UK could be suffering from low Vitamin D levels due to a long dark winter and this could effect those with and without Fibromyalgia. Since then it seems like most people with Fibromyalgia that have been tested have come out low, so it is certainly something worth looking into.

Symptoms of Low Vitamin D

To recap the symptoms of low Vitamin D are:

Fatigue
General muscle pain and weakness
Muscle cramps
Joint pain
Chronic pain
Weight gain
High blood pressure
Restless sleep
Poor concentration
Headaches

However there is no clear pattern of symptoms and some people remain symptom free despite low levels. It can also be hard to distinguish between the symptoms of low levels of Vitamin D and Fibromyalgia.

The £25 Test

About the test

The test is offered by the Pathology Department at City Hospital in Birmingham which is part of the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust. They will send you the kit with instructions by first class post and then you return it to them in a prepaid envelope. They then use liquid chromatography mass spectrometry method to measure the Vitamin D in your blood. This will measure both Vitamin D2 and D3 levels (also known as the 25-hydroxy test) and they will provide a clear interpretation of the results all of with your D2 and D3 levels. The results are sent to the email address provided on the consent form. But if you would prefer they we can post results to you. The results are expressed as nmol/L which are the older units still used in the US and some laboratories in the UK, however you can covert them to ng/mL with the help of their Q&A Page on their website. The test is a “blood spot” test where you prick your finger and place a spot of blood onto a sheet which acts a bit like Blotting Paper and you put four drops of the sheet. They aim to process results in 5 days.

How to buy

To buy you need to ring them on 01215074278 and pay over the telephone by debit or credit card. The cost of the kit and service is £25 and for organisations that order 10 or more they offer a discount of £5 (£20 per test). You can order from overseas for £30 a test to be sent by airmail.

Alternatives

If you have a reason for believing you have low Vitamin D levels your GP can conduct a blood test on the NHS at no cost so the £25 test is for added convenience of home testing and using the postal service. If you are due routine blood test your GP could arrange to test your Vitamin D levels at the same time.

If you have low Vitamin D

If you your test comes back as low you could increase your bodies exposure to sunlight as it is your body’s main form of collecting Vitamin D. Otherwise you can take Vitamin D supplements but speak to your doctor or Pharmacist before doing so. Too much Vitamin D can be harmful too.

Buying Vitamin D Supplements

Sometimes your GP may prescribe you supplements but you can also buy them in pharmacies and Health Food Shops. You can also buy them over the Internet and for more information visit Vitamin D in our Helpful Products section which has links you can follow to purchase them from a reliable retailer.

Click here to be taken to the Vitamin D test for £25 website


Vitamin D Deficiency

I thought I would write a post about Vitamin D deficiency as it seems to be a subject on the lips of quite a few at the moment and I have also added various Vitamins & Minerals to the Helpful Products section of the website.

Firstly I would like to mention Vitamin D without Fibromyalgia or particularly without a diagnosis as I think this offers a valuable insight into why it seems to be such a talking point. A few months ago a friend came to me to ask some advice about his health. He is one of those people who works all the hours god sends (in retail) but never seems to take a sick day. However on this occasion he was feeling out of character, fatigued and rather down. I went through the usual questions to probe his situation more and assess signs of stress, anxiety and depression. It became obvious that there was nothing “situational” in his life to cause these feelings and this led me onto considering chemical factors. I had a little think about my situation and his which on the face of it are very different, more like seeing what superman has in common with someone in a coma! I realised that he has spend the last six months literally in the dark, as had I, for different reasons and one of my problems was low Vitamin D. His lifestyle involves getting to work in the dark, coming home in the dark and spending all day indoors. As we had worked out his problem probably wasn’t situational but more chemical Vitamin D seemed a good starting point so I advised him to speak to his GP. A couple of hectic weeks passed until I spoke to him again but I was pleased to hear he had been to the doctors, his doctor has said the same as me, the doctors opinion was low Vitamin D and he prescribed a Supplement. He has taken these for a week or so and felt much better.

This got me thinking as at the time I was preparing to write an article about Hay Fever and I was explaining experts belief this year is going to be a really bad year for people with the condition. The reason was because of our particular long, cold and dark winter that we have just had in the UK. Now we get out Vitamin D from sunlight so perhaps this could be responsible for more than just a Hay Fever epidemic (if you will), but may be causing low Vitamin D in people more than a typical “seasonal variance.” This got me researching the problem and discovered journalists from the Mirror had been talking about the same subject in this article on their website.

Blood tests showed that I had low Vitamin D last summer and I had read up on the problem and how similar some symptoms were to Fibromyalgia but also how more likely people with Fibromyalgia were to have low Vitamin D. Depending on the severity of Fibromyalgia it the individual patient may determine how much it effects your mobility. Some patients diagnosed with Fibromyalgia are lucky to be able to hold down jobs but some of us, myself included are not so fortunate. I’ve hardly seen the sun in six months as I spend 95% of my time in bed and my best times are generally in the middle of the night. Some people with Fibromyalgia are very much the same. To prove my point about how similar the symptoms are here are some symptoms of low Vitamin D listed on one website:

There is no clear pattern of symptoms
People remain asymptomatic despite low levels
Fatigue
General muscle pain and weakness
Muscle cramps
Joint pain
Chronic pain
Weight gain
High blood pressure
Restless sleep
Poor concentration
Headaches
Bladder problems
Constipation or diarrhea

To me, that looks like a very similar list to the symptoms I associate with Fibromyalgia!

I think the best thing I can do is promote awareness of low Vitamin D, its symptoms, its relationship with Fibromyalgia and its relationship with the UK 2012/2013 winter. It may be worth discussing with your doctor especially if your symptoms have worsened over winter or if you are on a path towards a Fibromyalgia diagnosis. If your scheduled for any Blood Tests it may be worth asking for a Vitamin D level if its not already on the list.

To put things in perspective supplementation is sufficient for most and if you have low Vitamin D levels make sure you get tested after being on supplements a while to ensure its working and their isn’t a different reason behind the levels that may get missed. It is also worth mentioning that Vitamin D goes hand in hand with Calcium, basically Vitamin D helps the body to absorb Calcium so keep an eye on the relationship between the two on blood tests. If you have low levels of both and think it may be more than a lack of sunshine then read up on Hyperparathyroidism (Parathyroid Disease) but obviously try and keep things in perspective and discuss things with your GP. The long term risks of low Vitamin D include an increased risk of cancers (various studies show) so as it can be solved fairly easily it might be worth your while.

Too much

I would always speak to a Doctor or Pharmacist before taking any supplements. But certainly if your taking more than 1,000 IU. It is important to be monitored while taking supplementation so what your body is absorbing can be monitored and toxicity prevented. You can’t get too much from sunlight only but you can get too much taking it by mouth, as it is fat soluble the body has a hard time getting rid of it if you do take to much. Problems are toxicity, stripping calcium from your bones, kidney problems, stones and increased risk of cardio vascular disease.

“Very high levels of 25(OH)D can develop if you: take more than 10,000 IU/day (but not equal to) everyday for 3 months or more. However, vitamin D toxicity is more likely to develop if you take 40,000 IU/day everyday for 3 months or more.” – http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/about-vitamin-d/am-i-getting-too-much-vitamin-d/

“Taking 50,000 international units (IU) a day of vitamin D for several months has been shown to cause toxicity. This level is many times higher than the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for most adults of 600 IU of vitamin D a day.” – http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/vitamin-d-toxicity/AN02008

Where to buy

Our Vitamins & Minerals (Suppliments) section within our Helpful products section has more information on Vitamin D and Calcium in general as well as some good places to buy supplements from.

Further Reading

Symptoms & Diseases Associated With Vitamin D Deficiency on drfranklipman.com
Vitamin D Deficiency on webmd.com


Free Amazon E-Book on Fibromyalgia & C.F.S. (M.E.)

Free E-Book

Hi everyone, someone tweeted me about a free e-book available about Fibromyalgia & CFS. Its a rather long title Fibromyalgia And Chronic Fatigue: A Step-By-Step Guide For Fibromyalgia Treatment And Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Treatment. (Includes Fibromyalgia Diet And Chronic Fatigue Diet And Lifestyle Guidelines)

I do not know how good it is but when it comes to free things (that you don’t have to hand your details over for) it is best to get it while you can as they do not last long, then, if it isn’t any good you can just delete it. It is 67 pages and it is worth a look.

YOU DO NOT NEED A KINDLE

It is worth noting for people who are new to kindle books: You do not need a Kindle to get it. You can read these books on almost any computer or mobile device these days, and as I am so kind I will list the devices and you can click them to be taken to where you need to be, for free!

PC (Windows 8)
PC (Windows 7, Vista & XP)
Mac
iPhone & iPod Touch
Android Handsets
iPad
Android Tablet
Windows 8 Tablet

I am considering doing a section on free products (Freebies) as there seem to be a few each week I like to tell you about, like the Breath Right Strips & The Natural Sleeping Tablets. Until then you can click “Freebies” on the tag cloud on the right, under our twitter feed and they should all appear.

Reviewers Wanted

The Products section on the site is something I am keen to keep, knowing certain things have been used by people with Fibro really helps when it comes to deciding if you should invest in a product. Therefore I am looking for people to recommend products, review products and review books. You can get in touch at any time, even if your just recommending something and would like it to be listed. I am more than happy to credit you with the work and link to your website/twitter/facebook as you wish. You can also add your opinions to products already on the website, I will review your post and if it is objective and constructive I don’t mind using it. You can of course comment on any page anyway if you wish, our new spam filter sends you out a confirmation email after you comment so make sure you remember to confirm the comment or it will not appear. I had to delete 56,000 comments yesterday without going through them one by one as spam is an issue. I also want to know about your experience with freebies, so please contribute where you can, there is no pressure to contribute more, just do as much or as little as you want.

Enjoy your Book


2 Breathe Right Strips for Free

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Breathe Right are offering a sample of two Breathe Right Strips in exchange for your details (you can opt out after submission)

Benefits of Breathing Right

Night time nasal congestion can affect more than just your sleep, it can influence how you feel all day long especially with Fibromyalgia as patients often have sleeping problems. However they can help you if you are suffering from stuffiness or nasal congestion caused by colds or allergies as well. Breathe Right is a drug-free product that works instantly and can help you breathe better, sleep better and feel better.

How They Work

Breathe Right nasal strips are applied to the outside of your nose, which simply opens nasal passages so you can breathe better. Each drug-free Breathe Right nasal strip consists of flexible, “spring-like” bands. Placed correctly across the nose, the bands gently lift the sides of the nose to provide relief.

Breathe Right Can Help These Conditions:

Night time Nasal Congestion
Nasal congestion caused by: Allergies
Nasal congestion caused by: Colds
Nasal congestion caused by: Snoring

Get yours now


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