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Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/6/2008 9:00 AM (GMT -7)   
Well it's been over a week since I increased the malic acid to the full dosage. I'm still getting some stomach problems, but I'm experimenting with increasing the calcium and hopefully once I find the right level of calcium the stomach issues will go away.

In general I'm not really noticing a difference. I still feel the same amount of fatigue and pain from day to day. I'm still getting the random severe pain that only affects one or two areas at a time. The only difference I really see is that not getting enough sleep isn't wiping me out as much as it used to. There's also the fact that the last time I went grocery shopping I didn't feel like I had been hit by a truck afterward, but that one might just be a coincidence and will have to see how I do with other shopping trips.

Just not entirely sure if it's doing anything for me or not. The fact that I'm not getting flares as easily might just mean that I'm going through a good patch right now. It would be so much easier to tell if it was working if my everyday pain and fatigue was helped at all, but as I said, there is no change in that area. Will continue to stick with it for now and see what happens.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17094
   Posted 10/6/2008 9:32 AM (GMT -7)   
Kythe, it was several weeks before I really started feeling the effects of the supplements.  You need to know that these don't make you pain-free.  They help you be more comfortable.  Just the fact that  you aren't quite as fatigued and that you went to the store and didn't feel as bad when you got home tells me that something is working. 
 
I take 1,200 mg of Citracal for the calcium and I eat dairy products to help, too. 
 
You can still have flares while taking the supplements.  I always flare in the summer with  the heat and humidity here.  I really still hurt, but actually not as much as I did last year.  I started taking the supplements in December so this was my first summer with them.  Now that the heat and humidity have lessened, so has my need for as much medication.  In the past week I've stopped 600 mg. of ibuprofen and 2,000 mg. of Tylenol that I needed to take in the summer.  Before taking the supplements, I was taking the most of both meds to keep moving.  So, you could be in a flare, too.  Give it more time.  It isn't hurting you at all to take them. 
 
Instead of looking at the pain you may be having, try looking at any positive things that are happening.  You just may be surprised.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/6/2008 11:02 AM (GMT -7)   
Ok, I was sure that I read about people saying they started feeling the effects of the malic acid pretty quickly which is why I expected to. Will definitely give it more time.
 
So far I'm taking a lot more calcium than you. Right now I'm up to 500mg from my multivitamin plus 4000mg from Tums. I also eat a fair amount of cheese so I guess I'm getting more calcium from that. I know that seems like a lot of calcium but when I was only taking two pills of malic acid 2000mg of calcium from tums was what I needed to make the stomach problems go away so seems like I need twice as much to deal with the full dose of malic acid. I would be nervous about taking that much calcium, but the Tums bottle did say that up to 7000mg a day could be taken, so I don't think I have anything to worry about.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17094
   Posted 10/6/2008 12:47 PM (GMT -7)   
Kythe, I think you are taking way too much calcium.  You can overdose on calcium, you know.  According to my Tums bottle, it says that you can have two Tums twice a day.  That is the equivilent of 3,000 mg maximum!That's too much.  Just because a product it over-the-counter doesn't necessarily make it safe if you are taking too much.  Read these links.
 
 
 
If you see the malic acid is working for you and you are doing fine, try backing, slowly, off all of that calcium.  Your system could be used to the malic acid by then.  If not, then the malic acid is not for you.
 
Sherrine 
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/6/2008 2:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Well I'm looking at my Tums bottle right now and the directions say to take 2 tablets once or twice daily with a meal. The warning on the bottle says not to take more than 7 within 24 hours. Reading the nutritional information it turns out that there's actually only 800mg of calcium in each 1000mg tablet, so I've been taking 3200mg of calcium and not 4000mg as I had thought. I suppose you'll probably tell me that taking 3200mg of calcium a day is still too much.

When I was only taking two malic acid tablets I was taking 2 tablets of Tums with it and most of the stomach issues went away. Then when I upped it four malic acid tablets, I tried to stay at the 2 tablets of Tums. I started getting stomach problems again, I would get alternating constipation and diarrhea changing back and forth every couple of days. I started to feel better after taking 4 tablets of Tums.

I'm not sure if my body would just get used to the magnesium in the malic acid supplements. I mean if I forget to take the Tums, then I definitely feel it within hours. I know that with prescription medications, my body usually doesn't just get used to it, if I'm getting side effects, those side effects aren't going to go away unless I take something to counteract it or I stop taking the medication. Maybe I'll try what you suggested and back off the calcium some after awhile, but I have a feeling that it'll just have me running to the bathroom. I'll see how things go, but I really don't want to have to give up on the malic acid.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/9/2008 1:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Well it looks like I was wrong. I thought taking 4 Tums a day was helping, but now I'm just getting the same problems I was getting when I was only taking 2 Tums a day. My mother thinks I should call it quits with the malic acid, I'm not sure if I should listen to her or try to give it more time. I would like to give it more time because I'd just hate to think I wasted my money. I got it from the Puritan site and they do have a money back guarantee, but I'd have to pay to ship it back so in the end I really wouldn't get much money back at all. I was also hoping to prove my rheumatolgist wrong cause he said that the malic acid wouldn't help me at all. It probably would help if I could just get my stomach to tolerate it.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17094
   Posted 10/9/2008 2:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Kythe, how much magnesium are you taking altogether?  Include any that may be in any vitamins you are taking.  Magnesium is more likely the culpret.  It can cause upset stomachs and diarrhea.  From what I'v been reading, malic acid is used in medication to help upset stomachs!  So, maybe you are taking too much magnesium.  Also, are you taking this on a full stomach?  That would help keep your stomach from becoming upset.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/9/2008 8:11 PM (GMT -7)   
There's 250mg of magnesium in my multivitamin. In each of the malic acid tablets there's 152mg of magnesium and taking 4 of them a day comes out to 608mg of magnesium. So in total that's 858mg of magnesium.

I don't know if that's too much for a normal person, but it certainly seems like it's too much for me. Unfortunately I can't extract the magnesium from the malic acid tablets or from my multivitamins.

I do take it on a full stomach. I've been taking 2 pills after breakfast and 2 pills after dinner. Makes me wonder how bad off I'd be if I were taking it on an empty stomach.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


lucysgd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 10/9/2008 8:30 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Kythe  - If Tums is normally taken for indigestion, I'm guessing it reduces stomach acid.  Could it be that over time the Tums has alkalinized your digestive process  to the point that you don't have enough acid to properly digest your food, and thus the stomach issues?   Just a thought. 

I've started the Malic Acid as well - stayed on just one for over a week and bumped it up to two tonight.  I always find that "starting low and proceeding slow" gives my body a better chance to adjust. 

Lucy


diagnoses:  mono 1972; postviral CFS 1997; fibro 1998; CEBV 2005; UCTD (dx limbo) 2007
meds:  occasional low dose xanax for sleep, artificial tears w/ ointment at night, ibuprophin (none of which manages the problems very well!)
 
We cannot avoid the birds of sadness flying over our heads, but we need not let them make nests in our hair. 
       ~~ Chinese saying as quoted by Helen Nearing


Dagger
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 1522
   Posted 10/9/2008 8:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Try spacing out the malic acid pills. Take one four times a day instead of 2 twice a day. Sometimes small changes help. Try taking the pills, then eating or take them in the middle of your meal. You can try taking them on an empty stomach but I'd suggest you only take one pill. Try skipping your multivitamin for a few days.

Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/9/2008 9:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Well the reason for the tums, is that you are supposed to take extra calcium with the malic acid. I could be wrong but I'd think any other form of calcium supplement would have the same effects that you described. The reason I opted for the tums was because I already had it in the house because I take it for occasional heartburn. So why spend money on another product?

I did start off the malic acid slow. I was taking only one pill a day for quite awhile and it gave me stomach trouble right from the beginning. It was only after I tried taking a tums along with it that the diarrhea went away. Then I upped it two malic acid tablets a day and took 2 tums and everything seemed to be going ok. But then everything seemed to fall apart again when I tried to go up higher than that.

I appreciate the suggestions dagger, though I can't even imagine trying to take them 4 times a day. I just don't see how I could possibly remember to take it that often. It was extremely hard for me to get in the habit of taking them twice a day. Most of the time I'm so out of it and time moves faster than I do. I think I'd probably forget to eat if it weren't for the fact that I feel very sick if I don't. I think the only reason I can remember to take them twice a day was because I'm taking them after doing a specific activity, eating a meal. It might be that taking them spaced out over 4 times a day would make a difference, but I'm afraid that I'd end up being on edge all day worrying about taking them. Skipping the multivitamin might help, but even if it did, I wouldn't be able to quit it permanently. It's just not financially doable to buy all of my vitamins separately in order to avoid the magnesium from the multivitamin.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


lucysgd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 10/9/2008 9:18 PM (GMT -7)   
I didn't know about needing extra calcium w/ the malic acid - do you know how much more?

diagnoses:  mono 1972; postviral CFS 1997; fibro 1998; CEBV 2005; UCTD (dx limbo) 2007
meds:  occasional low dose xanax for sleep, artificial tears w/ ointment at night, ibuprophin (none of which manages the problems very well!)
 
We cannot avoid the birds of sadness flying over our heads, but we need not let them make nests in our hair. 
       ~~ Chinese saying as quoted by Helen Nearing


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/9/2008 9:30 PM (GMT -7)   
I really haven't been able to find any information that specifically says how much more you need. I just know that the calcium is supposed to balance out the magnesium that's in the malic acid.

All I've been able to do is experiment with it. It seems that either taking 4 tums a day isn't enough for me to handle the 4 malic acid tablets, or as you said maybe all that calcium could be causing me stomach trouble itself. I would like to try taking 1 and a half tums with each set of 2 malic acid pills I take to see if that would work better, but every time I try to break the tums in half, it just crumbles apart into a lot of tiny pieces.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


lucysgd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 10/9/2008 10:35 PM (GMT -7)   

Oh, right.  I used to always take my calcium and magnesium together in one vitamin supp before starting on the malic acid.  I figured to continue doing it that way would give me too much magnesium - so I got a separate calcium supplement - very inexpensive.  Also - I don't think the calcium in the Tums is what might be causing the stomach trouble, (though it did sound like you are getting quite a lot of calcium) but rather whatever else is in the Tums designed to reduce stomach acid/indigestion.  By over-alkilinizing your stomach acids you may actually be making it harder to break down and metabolize not only your food, but the vitamins/supps as well.  

Maybe you could try going back to one malic acid tablet without the Tums and see what happens.  I take mine with my multiple vitamin and calcium, about 15 minutes after a meal. 

Lucy


diagnoses:  mono 1972; postviral CFS 1997; fibro 1998; CEBV 2005; UCTD (dx limbo) 2007
meds:  occasional low dose xanax for sleep, artificial tears w/ ointment at night, ibuprophin (none of which manages the problems very well!)
 
We cannot avoid the birds of sadness flying over our heads, but we need not let them make nests in our hair. 
       ~~ Chinese saying as quoted by Helen Nearing


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/10/2008 7:46 AM (GMT -7)   
I'd have to check the bottle, but from what I remember, there isn't much in Tums besides the calcium other than filler ingredients.

That would be quite a jump to go from taking 4 to going back to taking only 1. I know that when I was only taking 1 malic acid tablet without the tums I was getting diarrhea everyday. I think I'm just going to stop taking the malic acid altogether for a few days, I just really can't take the stomach problems anymore and I just need a break. I'd also like to see if start to feel worse after stopping it for a few days, then it could give me some indication if it was actually helping me at all. All I know was that I built up to the full dosage of 4 malic acid pills over a period of probably a month or more and after all that time, it just seems so hopeless to think that I'd need to try to start over from 1 pill.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


lucysgd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 10/10/2008 8:21 AM (GMT -7)   

Kythe, I didn't realize you had been on the full dosage for a month - I read your post wrong and thought it had been about a week -sorry!  You may be right - taking a break right now might be helpful.  Good luck!

Lucy


diagnoses:  mono 1972; postviral CFS 1997; fibro 1998; CEBV 2005; UCTD (dx limbo) 2007
meds:  occasional low dose xanax for sleep, artificial tears w/ ointment at night, ibuprophin (none of which manages the problems very well!)
 
We cannot avoid the birds of sadness flying over our heads, but we need not let them make nests in our hair. 
       ~~ Chinese saying as quoted by Helen Nearing


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/10/2008 8:38 AM (GMT -7)   
I haven't been on the full dosage for a month, I just said that it's taken over a month to build up to the full dosage. I've probably been on the full dosage for a couple of weeks now or maybe it's been longer than that, it's very hard for me to remember these sort of things, all the days just blend in together and I always have a difficult time pinpointed when things happened.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


lucysgd
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 669
   Posted 10/10/2008 9:12 AM (GMT -7)   
I know what you mean - it's hard to keep it all straight...and I guess I'm not reading and retaining well today. Good luck with this - hope you can find a way to make it work for you!
Lucy
diagnoses:  mono 1972; postviral CFS 1997; fibro 1998; CEBV 2005; UCTD (dx limbo) 2007
meds:  occasional low dose xanax for sleep, artificial tears w/ ointment at night, ibuprophin (none of which manages the problems very well!)
 
We cannot avoid the birds of sadness flying over our heads, but we need not let them make nests in our hair. 
       ~~ Chinese saying as quoted by Helen Nearing


getting by
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 40567
   Posted 10/10/2008 1:44 PM (GMT -7)   
Kythe,

I think that you are right, I think that you should give the malic acid a break and see if anything changes. I wish that you could take it without all of the discomfort, but it doesn't sound like you would be able to. I hope that you feel better soon.

Hugs, Karen
  Moderator-Depression and fibromyalgia
 
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies


Kythe
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 10/10/2008 1:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for all the support everyone. I have to admit I was very surprised that the malic acid is giving me such a hard time. I know that I usually don't tolerate medications very well, but in the past I've always had much better results with natural remedies.
~Kythe
____________


Allergies, Asthma, Anxiety, Depression, IBS, PCOS, Fibromyalgia


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17094
   Posted 10/10/2008 2:19 PM (GMT -7)   
Kythe, this is about as natural a remedy there is.  Both malic acid and magnesium is found in many of the foods we eat daily...just not so much at one time.
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


poco
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 53
   Posted 10/10/2008 3:37 PM (GMT -7)   
Lucygd could you email me? I have a question I would like to ask you?
poco
 Fibromyalgia, Osteoprosis, Allergies, Severe Depression, PTSD, Anxiety/Panic attacks, Stress, Mood Disorders , IBS, Bone spurs, Hypothyroidism
 
I have taken off my meds cause there are so many of them but if you want to know just ask!
 
God delivered me from my severe depression!!!

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