Are you constantly tired? Does each day seem to drag on forever? Has napping on the couch become your go-to strategy for getting through each day? If this sounds familiar then you are in good company. Chronic fatigue is by far one of the most common problems in the world today. One out of every three Americans is poorly rested and suffer from chronic fatigue. Read on to learn about chronic fatigue causes that can prevent us from living our best life.
Those Sleepless Nights
People are being pulled in more directions than ever before by the technology we rely on to help us become more efficient so that we can work more efficiently and smarter. This kind of stress in our life can take a terrible toll on our minds and body.
Poor sleeping habits and sleep deprivation are the number one cause of chronic fatigue. People that do not sleep well are typically irritable, have more headaches, and have difficulty concentrating during the day. The average person requires 7 to 9 hours of uninterrupted sleep to maintain a constant level of alertness during the day. The chronic fatigue associated with sleep disorders can lead to or worsen stress, anxiety, and depression.
For more information see Natural Ways To Help With Sleep – Feeling Refreshed Every Morning!
The Power Of The Mind
Just as chronic fatigue can cause or worsen stress, anxiety, and depression; the opposite is also true. People with generalized anxiety disorders or chronic depression are more likely to experience a loss of energy and motivation. Serious depression can lead to excessive amounts of daytime tiredness and a loss of desire to do all the things in life that you typically enjoy (anhedonia).
Let’s Get Physical
Exercise – Exercise has been shown to be an excellent way to combat fatigue. You should strive to walk 8,000 to 10,000 steps a day, or more. Exercises that raise your heart rate and blood pressure will typically provide the most benefit. If you have medical issues then check with your healthcare provider before starting an exercise program. Consistency is important. Focus your workout schedule by exercising with friends, joining a gym, or using a personal trainer.
Listen To Your Body Talk
It’s hard to exercise properly when you’re not feeling well. Chronic fatigue is often a sign of a physical problem caused by an underlying medical condition.
Common Medical conditions associated with chronic fatigue:
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome -which can have a variety of causes
- Infections – like a cold or the flu
- Diabetes – especially if your blood sugar is too low or too high
- An underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) – which can lower your metabolic rate
- Anemia – which can decrease the amount of oxygen carried to your brain
- Sleep apnea – a condition that disrupts your sleep pattern throughout the night
- Fibromyalgia – diminishes the effectiveness of your sleep and makes it non-restorative
For more information on medical conditions see Wikipedia: Fatigue.
Eat What You’re Missing
Healthy Diet – A healthy diet is a key starting point for the prevention or elimination of chronic fatigue. Eat a diet that includes protein, carbohydrates, fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Eat slow and have small portions. It is better to eat smaller portions during each meal, with healthy in-between snacks. Check with a dietitian or other qualified healthcare provider if you have a medical condition that requires a specific diet, like diabetes.
Protein – Fish, and poultry are good sources of meat protein. Beans, nuts, and seeds are also high in fiber. Low-fat dairy, as well as tofu and soy products, are excellent dietary alternatives. For information on how to supplement your diet with protein powder mixes go here.
Carbohydrates – Carbohydrates break down to a common type of sugar (glucose) in your body. Unrefined whole grains, vegetables, legumes, fruit, and nuts are best. Avoid refined sugar products like sweets and candy.
Fat – Stick with good (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated) fats and sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Excellent choices are fatty fish, olives &olive; oil, nuts, soy-based products, and tofu. Avoid bad (saturated and trans) fats, which include things like fried foods, red meat, butter, margarine, lard, pastries, and other commercially made snacks.
Vitamins And Minerals – Eating right will provide you with the majority of the essential vitamins and minerals required to keep you energetic-feeling throughout the day. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies can be an underlying cause of chronic fatigue. Eat foods that are naturally high in B Complex Vitamins, Vitamin D, Iron, and Magnesium.
Your New Bundle Of Joy
Pregnancy – Fatigue is common, especially during the first and last part (trimester) of pregnancy. It is important to eat well, exercise, get plenty of rest, and be prepared to adjust your work schedule appropriately. Prenatal care with appropriate vitamin and mineral supplementation should be administered by a qualified healthcare professional. After childbirth, sleep deprivation can significantly worsen fatigue. Seek support for any feeling of anxiety and depression that may arise during or after pregnancy.
No matter how good we become at dealing with all that life has to offer, chronic fatigue can become a challenging reality. One of the best approaches to combating fatigue is to make a list of all the things in your daily routine that demand your attention. Begin each day by starting with the most important tasks and don’t stress about not being able to complete everything because tomorrow is another day.
Take care of your body and it will take care of you. Eat right, exercise, get plenty of sleep, and visit your healthcare provider regularly. Make a small part of each day about taking time for yourself to unwind and do the things you enjoy. Developing a hobby is a great way to add balance to your life. Spend time with your loved ones and friends. Reward yourself by planning vacations, trips, and other events that you can look forward to.
Tell Us What You Think
Please let us know what’s on your mind in the comment section.
- Do you have any tips or suggestions to share?
- Do you know anyone dealing with chronic fatigue?
- How are they dealing with the problem?