Weight Loss Improves Fibromyalgia Symptoms

fibromyalgia and weight loss

A group of medical experts found that being overweight or obese can intensify your fibromyalgia symptoms. As such, losing some weight can somehow help in managing the pain even better.

Body Wide Inflammation

The cells that are in our body’s fat tissues are often chemically active. As such, they release certain proteins including other chemicals that can intensify body wide inflammation. Medical researchers are beginning to link obesity to a state of constant inflammation. Although fibromyalgia is not a type of inflammatory disease, increased inflammation in the body can play a role in the level of pain and sensitivity.

Growth Hormone IGF-1

One of the factors behind the link between obesity and fibromyalgia is growth hormone. It is an insulin-like growth factor known as IGF-1. This hormone will drop when the BMI of a person increase. On the other hand, IGF-1 has been known to minimize fatigue as a result of fibromyalgia. In fact, most fibromyalgia patients rank fatigue as the top most annoying symptoms in the chronic pain syndrome. It is second to pain, which is the most unbearable symptom of all. This was according to a research done by the University of Gothenburg.

During a research and therapy study on arthritis, the researchers have tested the blood level of the IGF-1. They have also tested other measures on 48 individuals who are suffering from fibromyalgia. These participants went through a supervised exercise program. Researchers found that doing a 45-minute walking exercise at least twice a week could increase the level of IGF-1. As a resulted, they observed a decrease of fatigue among individuals who are either overweight, obese and healthy. The results have however occurred faster among those who are lightweight and have normal weight than the obese participants.

Exercise Decrease Fatigue and Improves Symptoms

Experts believe that moderate exercising can help decrease fatigue among fibromyalgia patients. However, some experts point that this has to do with the IGF-1 activity. The effect of regular exercising in a recent study was strongest among lean participants. However, after six months, exercising has also benefited obese and overweight individuals.

Losing weight can significantly improve fibromyalgia symptoms. In a study done in 2012, researchers made a comparison between fibromyalgia patients who lowered their BMIs and patients whose weight remained the same. Researchers found that those who lost weight exhibited healthier levels of inflammatory proteins. Furthermore, they also showed improvement in dealing other fibromyalgia symptoms such as depression and sleep problems.


  • I’ve had Chronic Fatigue & Fibromyalgia for 32 years that has been pretty debilitating at times. I lost 40 pounds two years ago and I felt better overall after that. My friends said I looked and acted healthier than I had in a long time. I’ve been going through a pretty rough flare-up the past few months while going through some painful back problems. Although I haven’t regained any of my weight I’ve gotten sloppy about my diet lately. My doctor doesn’t think I need to lose any more weight; however, I’d like to lose 10 more pounds because I think I’ll feel better and so will my back. I gave up sugar and gluten two years ago and the weight just melted off for the first time in my life. I’m convinced that besides being overweight those two things are poison to people that struggle with these two conditions.

  • Well, I will definitely have to decide disagree with these findings. I have lost 40 pounds and I am now average size, I also walk two to three times s per week, to help with stiffness, and yet my fibromyalgia is worse than ever. I’ve tried all kinds of supplements and absolutely nothing has helped 🙁

  • I too disagree with the statement that losing weight can reduce fibromyalgia symptoms, I have lost over 3 stone in the last 3 years and my fibromyalgia symptoms have got worse. It annoys me because I was also told it would be better for my degenerating spine and absolutely nothing has made any difference

  • I too have to disagree. I am underweight due to the constant nausea.I walk every day that I can and go swimming.I have come off all of my medications because of their side effects. I have never felt this ill in my life.

  • yet another “study” on weight and fibro , I have lost 50 pounds since last September and my pain is no better, in fact it’s worse. This has nothing to do with weight loss or gain, it’s just how fibro is.

  • I have to disagree with weight loss helping Fibromyalgia. After suffering whilst exercising and losing weight i felt alot worst.

  • I once weighed 129 lbs. Then I all of suudden had a weight increase to 170lbs. Shortly after that I lost all that. I was at 110lbs. For for while. Now I am 70lbs. For 3 years now. Doctors can’t find anything wrong with me. I rat like a child now. No meat hardly anymore. Sad.

  • I’ve tried everything suggested and nothing has helped. The fibromyalgia just continues to get worse and worse. It’s become crippling, and I’m too tired to do almost anything most of the time. I continue to try supplements that make sense, in hopes of some improvement.

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