Water Retention and Fibromyalgia

Water retention and fibromyalgiaI’m not sure if it’s common or not but I suffer more from water retention since being diagnosed with fibromyalgia than what I remember prior to that. I was diagnosed in 1995 so my memory might be a little off but I don’t think so.

Now I’m sure that my diet has something to do with the water retention and fibromyalgia.  Like many other “fibromites” (I saw this term is something I read earlier today and liked it) I crave carbohydrates and not the healthy kind either.  My desire for cookies, cakes, salty chips and nuts is doing me in.  These cravings have been particularly worse since I started work at a restaurant.  Hmmmm, makes one wonder doesn’t it.

To put it bluntly, I’ve put on 12 pounds since April 1, 2012.  Now I know it’s not ALL water weight but a good share of it is.  What convinces me of that is the way I gained it.  All but five pounds has been gained in the past six weeks.  That tells me it’s water.  Is anyone else suffering with water retention and fibromyalgia like this? If you are let me know.

Now that I’ve confessed to this, how do I get rid of the water?  My old standby of lemon and hot water isn’t doing much good.  Usually I could drink that for a couple of days and get rid of at least 5 pounds.  Not this time!

I know, I know, I have to give myself a mental kick and stay away from the things that cause me to retain water.  That’s easier said than done sometimes.  I fought so hard two years ago to lose 30 pounds and I don’t want to gain it ALL back.  I know that this will be more than water weight if I’m not careful…So let’s investigate.

Water retention and fibromyalgia can go together depending on what medications you take.  Savella, which I am on, has severe water retention as one of its side effects.  It’s rare but it’s there. Trazadone, another one of my medications, doesn’t have this as a side effect – thank goodness. Well, what else could be causing this unpleasantness?

As I mentioned earlier I crave the wrong carbs.  I’m thinking that’s my main culprit.  Of course it is, who am I trying to kid.  The cookie case is within arm’s reach at work. Not always being able to take a real lunch break and having to grab something on the run makes it easy to grab a cookie or dinner roll instead of meat and vegetables.  When the restaurant gets busy it’s what we all do.  I know I have to change this trend.  I’ve done it before and can do it again.

All (yeah right) I have to do is get back to my vegetable and lean meat lunches.  I just have to figure out how to do that at work.  Getting rid of the bad carbohydrates will do wonders for losing the water weight and actual fat I’ve put back on.

On the other hand, water retention and fibromyalgia do go together. Because of the cravings we fibromites have those very foods cause water retention.  Also the fact that it’s hard for us to exercise to redistribute the water and then shed it doesn’t help.  Combine with that the fact that some of the medications we have to take have water retention as a side effect it’s not surprising that we bloat easily. No wonder some of us have problems.

Well gang, this is my story. Now I have to write a new chapter and get rid of this baggage I’ve picked up.  Wish me luck and I wish all of you in the same situation luck too.

Water retention and fibromyalgia

4 Responses to “Water Retention and Fibromyalgia”

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  1. Cynthia says:

    I don’t know if my fibromyalgia has anything to do with my water retention or not. I’ve had both conditions for at least 30 years. Over the last three years both have become disabling in their own way.

    What every doctor I’ve ever had thought was from eating too much salt (they didn’t believe me when I told them that I cook from scratch with no salt. Any salt I get is in processed and fast food which we eat rarely.) has been diagnosed as hereditary lymphedema type II, an abnormal buildup of lymph fluid resulting in severe swelling of the legs. Thankfully, I have a wonderful, supportive husband who “forced” me to make an appointment with my doctor (and went to the appointment with me) when my shins turned bright red, were warm to touch and the lymphatic fluid began weeping through my skin because there was no where else for it to go. That was the day we discovered it wasn’t just water retention and I was very close to having the bacterial skin infection cellulitis. Now I wear thigh length very firm prescription medical compression hose from the time my feet hit the floor in the morning until bedtime.

    The hose are so painful to put on due to my fibromyalgia that in the beginning my husband had to help me put them on and take them off. My legs feel so much better now but if I’ve been on my feet a lot during the day, they still swell some and my husband has to help me get them off because of the pain from getting them off.

    I would love to know if others with fibromyalgia have this problem.

  2. CHRIS ARNOLD says:

    Hi Cynthia,

    I am so glad I read your letter because I have fibromyalgia and recently have developed severe fluid retention in my legs where my skin is changing colour and it does not look good that it should be left like it. My doctor just says it comes with the territory. I don’t know where else to go for help. Any ideas?

    Regards Chris

    • linda says:

      I don’t have any other ideas at this point. If you are on Facebook there are a few blogs out there that might help. One I particularly like is Fibromyalgia Humor and Positivity. It’s a closed group for those of us that have this and their caregivers. Your doctor is right, it does come with the territory and, after 20 years, still plagues me all the time.

      Regards, Linda

  3. I don’t know if this helps, or even applies (due to medications etc) but I stumbled upon something accidentally in the last few months.
    I occasionally drink socially, and the only alcohol that didn’t give me a fever was GIN. In fact, it makes me CLEARER. I found when I drank it, I wouldn’t “get drunk”… but i realized it was because I have such severe brain fog all of the time, and the gin helped with that.
    I would wake up the next day feeling almost NORMAL. “Shouldn’t I have a hangover?” I thought. Also, all of the edema (fluid retention) would be gone.

    I had stumbled upon the magic of gin. The berry that they use in it reduces inflammation, and the inflammation is what causes brain fog, and I would assume the edema.

    Apparently some people soak raisins in gin, and eat a few before bed. I’ve started having a few beverages on the nights I feel like hell, and it actually works.

    Just a tidbit of information for those who can use it.

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