A few weeks back, I posted this picture of my FitBit and vowed to do 10,000 or more steps every day. I was extremely excited and determined to hit the ground running. However, I didn’t take into consideration that I have Sjögren’s Syndrome. Whenever I tell people that I have this auto immune disease, they always ask “what is that?”. Most people don’t know what it is or how it affects people. This is how the Sjögren’s Syndrome Foundation website describes it:
What is Sjögren’s?
Sjögren’s (“SHOW-grins”) is a systemic autoimmune disease that affects the entire body. Along with symptoms of extensive dryness, other serious complications include profound fatigue, chronic pain, major organ involvement, neuropathies and lymphomas.
Sjögren’s is a systemic disease, affecting the entire body. Symptoms may remain steady, worsen, or, uncommonly, go into remission. While some people experience mild discomfort, others suffer debilitating symptoms that greatly impair their functioning. Early diagnosis and proper treatment are important — they may prevent serious complications and greatly improve a patient’s quality of life.
So, because I was not used to doing 10.000 steps per day, it didn’t take long for my Sjögren’s to flare up. When I get a flare, I typically don’t have energy to do my normal day-to-day activities and my joints and muscles ache all over. I have been diagnosed for approximately 7 years and I’m able to manage my symptoms very well. However, there are specific things that will bring on a flare for me. They are, over-doing it, not getting enough rest, stress eating poorly, There are other things that I have read about, but these 4 usually do it for me.
So, what I was able to do was step 5,000 to 6,000 steps per day. Eating is never a problem, I always eat good, fresh food and I was still able to lose 3 pounds this month. Yay for me!!! This week, I will try to step it up to 6,500 – 7,000. Of course, I will eat plenty of fruits, vegetables and lean meat, lots of water and plenty of sleep. With that combination, I should end up just fine.