Review of nutritional approaches to fibromyalgia

Nutr Rev. 2022 Nov 7;80(12):2260-2274. doi: 10.1093/nutrit/nuac036.


Context: A multidisciplinary approach has been suggested to be the optimal form of treatment of fibromyalgia (FM). A research focus on nutritional therapy has developed in recent years, and this approach has been more frequently integrated into the recovery plan of patients with FM.

Objectives: The interaction between the nutritional status and health of patients with FM is highlighted in this review, and possible dietary approaches to ameliorating the disease's effects are discussed.

Data sources: FM research studies containing a nutrition or diet focus with a publication date between 2000 and 2021 were scanned broadly through a computerized search of the MEDLINE, PubMed, and Web of Science databases.

Study selection: Studies that included the following criteria were eligible for inclusion: (1) original research and case studies that evaluated obesity and nutritional approaches as a therapeutic intervention for FM, and (2) patients older than 18 years who were diagnosed withFM according to the 1990 American College of Rheumatology criteria.

Data extraction: Interventions included nutritional supplementation, nutrient- and obesity-related blood analyses, prescribed diets, body mass index or obesity and quality-of-life assessments, weight reduction, food-additive elimination, and evaluation of food perception and food sensitivity.

Results: After the literature search, 36 studies (N = 5142 individuals) were identified as relevant, and their full texts were assessed for inclusion in the review. Conditions such as obesity, food allergies, nutritional deficiencies, and food additives were revealed to be risk factors that correlated with complications of FM. Several studies showed beneficial effects for patients with FM of high-antioxidant, high-fiber foods such as fruits and vegetables, low processed foods, high-quality proteins, and healthy fats.

Conclusion: There is no specific diet therapy for the treatment of FM. However, overall, studies indicated that weight control, modified high-antioxidant diets, and nutritional supplementation are beneficial in alleviating symptoms in patients with FM.

Keywords: dietary intake; fibromyalgia; nutrition therapy; rheumatologic disease.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants
  • Diet
  • Fibromyalgia* / therapy
  • Humans
  • Nutritional Status
  • Obesity


  • Antioxidants