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Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue victims typically suffer from low energy, muscle and joint pains, difficult sleep, poor immune function and generalized weakness. They typically get very little resolution of their disease from mainstream medicine. Many go to several different medical practitioners, all to no avail. It is rather mysterious and most practitioners will say there is no cure or worse yet, it is psychological.

Medical doctors are excellent at treating symptoms with drugs; however with these diseases the symptoms are diverse and drugs seldom seem to work. The root problem can be a virus such as Epstein-Barr or Cytomegalovirus. They are not easily detected but one clue should make the medical doctor suspicious. It is a high white blood cell count. This usually means the body is fighting disease. In the case of the viruses, they attack at the heart of the problem, i.e. energy production on the cellular level.

The use of a supplement for weak hearts, called D-Ribose, has found success in the hands of some forward thinking cardiologists. Another alternative practitioner, Dr. Andrew Weil, author of a book called Natural Health, Natural Medicine says: "...D-Ribose may ease the pain and fatigue of patients with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome."

Not only does the D-Ribose strengthen the heart but also the energy metabolism in all the cells of your body; there are over 70 trillion of them. With better circulation from a strong heart there is better delivery of nutrients to these cells and the individual cells of all the tissues benefit.

A pilot study was done on 41 patients with fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome. They received D-Ribose three times a day for 28 days. At the conclusion of the study it was found 66% of the patients experienced better energy levels, sleep and better mental clarity...with less aches and pains.

Just what is D-Ribose and how does it work? It is a 5 carbon sugar that easily converts into cellular energy inside the mitochondria of all cells. The mitochondria are energy factories that produce ATP (adenosine-tri-phosphate) which is the fuel for every cell in your body.

D-Ribose is one of the best raw energy sources and it does not have the negative side effects that often occur with excess glucose or regular sugar.

According to Life & Health Research Group, Inc, supplementation with D-Ribose helps an energy weak heart to recover 85% of its ATP level within 24 hours.

They cite research that shows that even after heart attack, "supplemental D-Ribose helped ATP levels and heart function return to normal within only two days".

Their research states that "more than 150 peer reviewed published studies attest to the fact that D-Ribose effectively increases ATP while improving performance on muscles". This means that an adequate supply of D-Ribose to the heart (and other muscles) greatly enhances energy and quality of life.

A Mayo Clinic hematologist (blood expert) helped develop extended life for platelets in blood transfusions and organ transplants. Hematologist, Daniel Ericson, M.D., and his team found that D-Ribose actually acts as a preserver for blood platelets.

D-Ribose functions as an anti-inflammatory and Dr. Erickson found a dramatic increase in the longevity of platelets. For example, normally after 5 days only 5% of platelet function works. With the supplementation of D-Ribose into the blood supply typically there is an 80% function for 7 days (2 days longer and at 80% function instead of only 5%).

D-Ribose is part of the building of the components that form DNA and RNA molecules. These molecules are the carriers of genetics and reproductive substances at a cellular level. Not only is D-Ribose essential as a component of energy for cells but also for the regeneration of cells. It helps convert nutrients into an utilizable form.

With age, there is a natural depletion of D-Ribose and supplementation is appropriate to prevent a deficiency. Research studies have shown significant benefits to aging, muscle weakness, fatigue and heart disease when D-Ribose supplementation is given. Toxicity from it has not been shown. Cardiologist Stephen Sinatra often prescribes 5,000 mg or more daily for his heart patients. It is sold as a supplement, is apparently quite safe and does not require a prescription.

A number of creditable scientific studies make it clear that a D-Ribose supplement is valuable in averting or reducing congestive heart failure and reducing chronic muscle disease such as fibromyalgia. In addition, athletes claim significant benefits, as do aging subjects, who just do not make enough D-Ribose naturally.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended as a cure for Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, but rather as an aid to understanding the nature of your health problems.

Denis Van Loan DDS gathers the latest in valuable scientific information on alternative health issues from as many as 17 different sources. The information is distilled and presented in various articles and blogs. 

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