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Let's Talk: Living a Full Life with Fibromyalgia and Lupus

On this week’s episode of The SavvyCast, Jamie is joined by Suzanne Bailey to discuss living with two chronic autoimmune conditions, fibromyalgia and lupus. Suzanne is living a full and productive life despite having both lupus and fibromyalgia. She shares her journey to diagnosis, treatment, and ultimately management of both these conditions.

Suzanne primarily manages her Lupus mainly with diet and exercise and vitamins. Since she also has Fibromyalgia, exercise and vitamins are VITAL to managing both chronic diseases.  Her Lupus attacks my nerves, lungs, and joints. Pain in her feet can be an issue, so she mainly does body strengthening three days a week, mostly low impact.

This consists of everything from TRX to weight training to HITT classes. Consistency helps maintain flexibility and strength.

Regular massages and stretching sessions are very helpful, as well as Epsom salt baths after work outs. Suzanne also adds walking, rowing, recumbent biking, and elliptical training in for extra cardio.

Suzanne takes several vitamins to help manage her condition. She does not take many perscription medications and instead opts to take vitamins.

Most of the vitamins Suzanne takes can be found on Amazon, although she does take prescription Vitamin D2, which can be requested from your general practitioner. The vitamins Suzanne takes daily are Rheumate, which is a B vitamin. Vitamin D2, 50,000 once a week, and Vitamin D3, 2,000 daily. She also takes zinc and Turmeric to help with inflammation.

Suzanne has taken one prescription to help manage her neuropathy. She takes 2mg of Naltrexone at night which helps the neuropathy that is widespread, over 80% or my body. After ten years of managing with only diet and exercise, Suzanne also recently added 100 mg of Hydroxychloroquine to combat an ongoing flare. If she experiences a severe flare, she will also take  a steroid pack. 

Lupus manifests differently in everyone, so it is important to work closely with your doctor for the best protocol to manage your illness. Communication and honesty is key to finding the best treatment. However, Suzanne wants everyone to know that these two conditions don't define or really limit her from living a full and active life.

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