Turmeric Benefits for Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia causes chronic pain in the ligaments, muscles and tendons combined with fatigue and tenderness all over the body. There is no specific cause for this condition but those who suffer from fibromyalgia could suffer from a malfunctioning of the pain preceptors in the body that makes them very sensitive to pain. Sleep problems, genetics, injury or infection, rheumatic diseases may also cause fibromyalgia.

Some symptoms of fibromyalgia are irritable bowel syndrome, pain and stiffness, depression, dizziness, anxiety, memory lapses, fatigue etc. Although debilitating, fibromyalgia is not life threatening or degenerative and can be managed with medication and self care. Drug therapies, nutritional supplements, homeopathy, Ayurvedic treatment using herbs, exercise, chiropractic treatment, massage, acupuncture or mind-body therapies are some ways to manage fibromyalgia.

Turmeric for Fibromyalgia

If you have read other articles on my portal or know about turmeric even a little bit you will already know that turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties and this could benefit patients with fibromyalgia since one cause of this condition is rheumatic diseases.

It is thus not surprising that in a preliminary study of 18 patients with rheumatoid arthritis, it was found that taking a dosage of 1200mg/day curcumin supplements for 2 weeks improved symptoms of joint swelling, morning stiffness and walking time. This was comparable to taking 300mg daily of a NSAID for the same period without the side effects.

It has been suggested that a combination of turmeric and ginger taken regularly could benefitsturmeric for fibromyalgia fibromyalgia patients. There are many home remedies that could help treat fibromyalgia. Patients get little relief from conventional drugs like NSAIDs, besides these drugs causing many adverse effects. Alternative treatment using herbs like turmeric could provide relief and are safe to use for long periods. Curcumin, which is the active ingredient in turmeric, offers very effective anti-inflammatory benefits that are well documented. This could benefit treatment of fibromyalgia too.

Curcumin has antioxidant properties that could neutralize free radicals that cause damage to healthy cells. Free radicals are said to damage joints and cause inflammation in patients with arthritis. Using the recommended turmeric dosage does provide relief for patients with rheumatoid arthritis that are similar to phenylbutazone. Hence, similar symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia like morning stiffness, reducing swelling of joints and increasing walking time could improve when curcumin supplements are used. Using curcumin daily in foods as a spice can also offer various health benefits for patients with arthritic symptoms.

Laboratory animals fed a diet including curcumin for 5 weeks showed an improvement in their immune functioning. Symptoms such as stiffness and joint pain are common to patients with arthritis and fibromyalgia. In fact, fibromyalgia could occur in those with rheumatoid arthritis. Chronic arthritic symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis are rarely relieved with common NSAIDs like aspirin or ibuprofen. More powerful NSAIDs can relieve these symptoms but can cause side effects.

The benefits of curcumin in human studies are still not very well researched, but this is not surprising because western world has started looking at turmeric seriously not so long ago. Hence, although it is known to reduce the risk of cancer, dementia, heart disease, colitis, ulcers, cataracts, arthritis, and more, extensive scientific studies are required to substantiate these claims in concrete manner. This is not to say turmeric does not provide benefits, it is just to say we do not understand it fully. But if we take knowledge of thousands of years of ancient medicine science such as Ayurveda, then we know through experience that turmeric indeed has amazing health benefits.

Dosage

Turmeric has been used in Chinese and Indian Ayurvedic medicine as a non-toxic treatment for arthritis that does not cause too many side effects. Standardized curcumin extract of 300mg thrice daily is the recommended dosage for inflammation. This could be used to manage symptoms of fibromyalgia. Curcumin is a blood thinner and can increase effectiveness of certain medications like aspirin and Coumadin. Sometimes curcumin is combined with Bromelain to increase its anti-inflammatory effectiveness and absorption rates.

For osteoarthritis, the dosage is 500mg twice daily. This dosage is for Meriva, Indena a specific turmeric extract. Curcumin supplements can be bought without a prescription. Sometimes these supplements also contain piperine – a chemical compound that is said to improve bioavailability of turmeric by slowing down its metabolism. Piperine does interact with drugs, so check this before taking curcumin supplements that include it.

Precautions

When used in appropriate dosages, turmeric is safe for adults. Used in excess – e.g. 1500mg twice daily – could cause side effects like indigestion, dizziness, diarrhea or nausea. Since turmeric supplements could cause menstrual bleeding or stimulate the uterus, it is not recommended for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Those who suffer from gall bladder problems need to undergo surgery or are taking anti-coagulant or diabetic medications must avoid taking turmeric supplements. 

23 Comments

    1. Hi. We don’t have reliable information for dosage of liquid turmeric. You could follow the manufacturer’s guideline or consult a herbalist about this.
      However you can take Golden Paste. Start with small doses such as 1/4-1/2 tsp and if you see no side effects then increase the dose gradually to 1-2 tsp 2-3 times a day over a few weeks. Best taken with food to avoid acid reflux. Avoid taking it at the same time when you take other meds. http://www.turmericforhealth.com/turmeric-recipes/how-to-make-turmeric-paste-or-golden-paste

    1. Turmeric has blood sugar lowering properties. Therefore turmeric supplements are not advised with diabetes medications since they could have an additive effect and abnormally lower blood sugar.
      Interestingly one clinical trial reports that it is safe to take curcumin supplements with anti-diabetes medication.
      http://www.turmericforhealth.com/scientific-research-on-turmeric/curcumin-enhances-therapeutic-effect-of-conventional-anti-diabetic-drug
      Dietary turmeric is absolutely safe with diabetes medication.

  1. If I order this product one time to try it are they going to send it every month or can i just order it as i need it. My fibro was in remission for a yr. But is back with a vengence. I swould like to just give it a try . also how long before it starts working ? Thank you Peggy

    1. Hi Peggy. Its a one time order if you are ordering from the brands we recommend on http://www.turmericforhealth.com
      To see a difference in fibromyalgia you have to give it a months time, however some people experience relief soon. You can take 1/4 to 1/2 tsp of Golden Paste initially and gradually increase it to 1-2 tsp to 2-3 times a day or how it suits you.
      http://www.turmericforhealth.com/turmeric-recipes/how-to-make-turmeric-paste-or-golden-paste

  2. copied info from a study post;
    We recommend that you find a Tumeric (curcumin)!supplement with bioperine (from black pepper and another name for piperine), This is the substance that enhances absorption of curcumin by 2000%.

    Without this substance, most of the curcumin just passes through your digestive tract.

  3. I have had fibromyalgia for about five years and couldn’t believe how much pain it put me in. I started taking 1500mg of Turmeric with Curcuminoids . Within two weeks I saw that my pain was much less and that my aching in my elbows was gone almost as well as pain in my knees, hands, legs, etc. It was such a noticeable difference I kept expecting it to wear off or just stop helping but here I am several months later and it is working as well as ever. To say I am so much better after taking the Turmeric-Curcuminoids is an understatement.

    1. Hi Carol Ross, I also suffer fibromyalgia, my right hip, elbows & knees or worse!… I was diagnosed last year… I take co-dynamol & Amitriptyline…. Can you please tell me the name and make of the tablets/Tunmerciful that you have been taking as I’d really be interested at giving this a go to get me off the drugs the Doctor has prescribed…. I thank you in advance for you’re help….

      1. My friend, I took amitriptyline and I really gained a lot of weight and was so dehydrated. I quit that and started the turmeric and I am so glad I did. Be sure to drink plenty of water. The drug made me so drowsy, I slept way too much without any energy. With the turmeric I sleep better and feel better. Give it 2 to 4 weeks and monitor the changes.

    2. Hello Carol I also have fibromyalgia and have been on Tumeric supplements over a year but am not getting the same results. Can I have the brand of Tumeric you are using. I’ll try anything to get through this pain even though I am on Opiods.
      I started taking golden milk this evening and hoping this will help.

      1. Just purchase turmeric in the seasoning department at a grocery store. Put a pinch or so of it in each of your meals. Better than pills as we have no clue how much of the curcumin in the pill is absorbed. All people should have turmeric in their diet because of curcumin!!!! Cancer rates, especially in women would drop by at least 25% in my humble opinion. Anyone with MS should take it daily!!!!! Again, not the pill. Just buy the spice turmeric. If you are not prone to kidney stones, you should also take L-lysine or eat foods with L-lysine.

      2. Mirella, I take Synchro. It is a turmeric elixir heavy with the added pepper and I must admit it is hard to take. I make the milk but finally I just down the 1 oz. and then quick eat or drink something after to get the peppery and bitter taste away. But it is so worth it and I have a son who is a master herbologist who says the pepper additive makes it possible for the body to absorb the turmeric. My energy improved, I sweat more, sleep better, and feel like my appetite is decreasing for sugary foods. My joints are definitely better and I don’t feel so “down” with mood swings. Only have been trying this for 1 month and I am 69 which means changes happen more slowly when older. I expect to do this 2 times per day for 6 months to give it the times to make the best difference.

        1. I take it just like you do Cheryl! I just swig it back like a kid taking medicine and then I have something ready to take immediately that tastes good!! I’m only on day Four but I feel that my appetite has gone way down which is a hidden blessing!! Did you notice that? I’m anxious to get a little further along to see if I get any pain reduction from it. I’ve been taking the pills for a few years but I just felt this liquid was a better option for me.

      3. I bit the bullet and bought Synchro Gold Turmeric Elixir which has the pepper and some ginger in it. It is a golden fairly thick liquid that I take a 1 oz. shot of morning and afternoon. Must be refrigerated. I also take turmeric capsules produced by BioGanix. I started with the elixir and believe me it is truly a test. This stuff is not great tasting, but I chase it with some Kombucha or just water. It is peppery in the throat and really bitter. But I have been suffering with this fibromyalgia for years so I figure it is worth the few seconds getting it down for the relief I am feeling. I have been drinking this for three weeks (also mixed it with warm coconut milk which was better but I don’t bother anymore) and I am feeling a big shift all over. Better sleep is so priceless, but in the first two weeks I noticed I was actually more tired. So, I decided to take it easy and let this stuff do it’s work. I slowed down and even napped. Just yesterday I started taking 1 capsule of the Turmeric Curcumin extract supplement with BioPerine 1,000 mg. per serving, 120 capsules. You can get it on Amazon for about $17 per bottle and free shipping if you have PRIME. I am taking 1 capsule before food 2 times a day. Since the 2 oz. a day of the elixir equals 1000 mg. and the 2 capsules are equal to 1000 mg., I think that is a good dosage for a week. Then I plan to up it to 2 capsules, 2 times a day. Then I will be getting 3000 mgs. daily and I’ll see how that goes.
        It’s really a crapshoot when it comes to this fibromyalgia thing. I have a son who is a master herbologist and he’s been trying to get me to take turmeric. He swears I’ll be the energizer bunny within 6 months and much more active without the pain. So far I DO sleep better, I DO have more energy, and I DO have less pain and stiffness and the other promises touted about Turmeric must be true cause I am whizzing through mental stuff I was in a huge fog over. I wish you luck with whatever you decide to try and I will report my progress on this blog in a few weeks. So stay tuned.

    3. That is awesome! Were you taking any prescription medications when you were taking turmeric? I am taking Lyrica and not getting much relief. Do you know if I can take turmeric with Lryica?

      1. Sharon, no I found that almost every prescription for almost every ailment is dehydrating. That alone causes muscle aches and joint pain so why add to the already existing problems. Besides I have never heard of anyone who has found relief using the prescriptions except the actors on t.v. ads for them.
        I guess I have had too many experiences with natural remedies to buy into all the silly pills that are virtually a debilitated version of natural properties meant to fortify and heal our bodies.
        I read a article recently that stated there were no adverse effects combining the two. I can’t qualify that because I have not tried to combine the effort.s of turmeric and prescriptions. Might work, don’t know how the Lyrica or other prescription meds are supposed to help the body. The older I get the more I try to use common sense and my intuition. I raised 8 kids and really got fed up with all the antibiotics drs. wanted to give my kids with every sore throat or runny nose. And today they are all healthy adults. Maybe I was just lucky.

      1. I guess I didn’t add that to my post. I don’t plan to take it like that for a long period. I thought after a few weeks of the 3,000 mg. per day I would gradually drop back to the 2oz. of elixir and maybe 1capsule per day, about 1500 as a steady diet. Is it like some other protocols where you go on a few weeks and then off for a few weeks or can it remain as a steady moderate intake.

        1. Turmeric can be taken daily on long term in diet. Even with supplements there is no such protocol as discontinuing for weeks and then taking it again; it can remain as a steady moderate intake. Turmeric as a spice is safe to consume in limited amounts in diet. Supplements on a long term are not advised.

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