EBV the Epstein-Barr Virus. This little gem is thought to be the not only the assailant but the cause of many chronic illnesses including fibromyalgia. Our first thought goes to the “kissing disease.” Mono or mononucleosis is a virus many individuals get in their early teens.
According to Anthony William, a contributor to the Goop, there are basically 320 million people in the United States and 225 million of them carry some form of the Epstein-Barr Virus. There is not only one version of the EBV virus, there are over 60 strains. Mr. Williams reports that EBV is the source of many significant maladies including thyroid disease, vertigo, and tinnitus. He also believes our so-called “mystery illnesses” such as fibromyalgia, Lyme, and chronic fatigue syndrome (plus many more chronic illnesses) are caused by this virus. The reasoning behind this theory is put into a nice little package of exploring stages the body goes through with EBV while noting if the virus is in an aggressive state or hibernating.
- Stage One; Origins and Transmission.
- Stage Two; Mononucleosis.
- Stage Three; Nesting.
- Stage Four; Inflammation of the Central Nervous System.
Hmmm… it is definitely a theory. I believe it may hold true for ‘some’ of us. My problem with this theory is not everyone who has EBV (that would be 225 million people) has a chronic illness or malady. I understand the virus can hibernate, many can, but sleeping dogs just do not stay asleep forever.
Let’s open up a new box of worms to add to the mix. Let’s start with the fact we are not a very healthy country, to begin with. In fact, we are one of the unhealthiest! According to a study published in 2013 by the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, less than 3% of Americans meet the fundamental qualifications for a “Healthy Lifestyle.” Defining it as follows;
- Excercise for at least 150 minutes a week.
- A diet score in the top 40 percent on the Healthy Eating Index.
- Body fat percentage under 20% for men and 30% for women.
- Not smoking.
Wendy Henderson, a contributing writer for the Fibromyalgia News Today, brought up nine possible causes of fibromyalgia that I found quite interesting. She encourages you to talk with your doctor about the following possible causation factors;
- Gluten Intolerance
- Candida Overgrowth
- Thyroid Problems
- Mercury Toxicity
- Vitamin and Mineral Deficiency
- Glutathione Deficiency
- Traumatic Events and Stress
After looking at all of the information I have put together for this post, including hours and hours of reading about each proposed ’cause’ I have come up with a theory too! I believe the bottom line is there are different ‘types’ of fibromyalgia, just as there are different ‘types’ of other chronic illnesses.
I believe there are most likely three distinct root causes of a chronic illness;
- viral origin
- traumatic event origin
- genetic predisposition origin
So, WHY do we get sick? This is still the question I cannot answer… why do some of us get sick after going through the same circumstances as others, and they do not get sick? Some of us smoke and never get lung cancer, others get lung cancer and have never smoked! Why is this? Luck? Environment? Lifestyle? There must be some combination of conditions that make an individual a prime candidate for an illness. Where does this illness originate? Virally? From trauma? Is there a genetic predisposition?
I really do not know the correct answers.
What do you think?