“Chronic tiredness” (or “fatigue”) is an increasingly common complaint and is being researched on various search engines more and more these days. Doctors are also hearing these terms and phrases from patients in their offices. All signs point to the substantial extent and hence seriousness of the problem as well as the very necessity to address it. While many people underestimate it or justify it as having to do with too much work, the true source of the dilemma may surprisingly be totally different, yet more logical than one might think
One approach that I highly admire is the “SHINE” protocol by Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum, who is the author of the bestselling From Fatigued to Fantastic. This protocol grasps both the most common and the lesser known causes of chronic fatigue as well as postulates that a patient’s chronic fatigue could be caused by more than one of the following areas:
Let’s take a closer look at each of them, to conduct a thorough examination
Sleep is a time of regeneration. It allows both the mind and the body to recharge and refill its lost energy reserves as well allows us to regain our faltered zeal for life. It is the period when all of the cells in our body work hard to restore the disrupted balance, regenerate, and fix any damage. No further explanation is needed, as it is crucial for us to have the energy to get through the day, and if we don’t get enough of it, fatigue easily barges in.
Here are the potential causes of your disrupted sleep pattern:
Poor sleep hygiene
Little would one know how many seemingly unimportant habits play an important role in sleep quality. First off, think about the activities you do in your bed. If it serves for more than sleep or sex (e.g., you work from there), then changing this may be the solution to your sleep problems. Our minds form associations between certain places and activities—if you get used to stimulating your brain between the sheets, it will make it hard for you to fall asleep in the same place. Or maybe you sleep at irregular times, taking long naps throughout the day? This also does not work in your favor, as it confuses your body’s naturally inbuilt clock. Make your bed the place where you rest at night.
Disrupted biological clock
Our bodies have a naturally inbuilt biological clock, which in the past, effectively regularized our sleeping patterns. When it was dark, there was a signal in the body to go to sleep. Then when the sun rose the next morning, there was a signal to wake up and get moving. The signal was melatonin and its round-the-clock concentration changes. To this day, our melatonin levels rise when it is dark outside and get lower when our environment is full of light. Nonetheless, in times of electricity, our brain can easily be tricked, especially with the use of our phones and other technologies. They emit “blue light” which can greatly disrupt our melatonin secretion, thus disturbing our body signaling to us when to fall asleep or not.
High cortisol levels
Cortisol is a stress hormone which that keeps the body alert and energetic in times of stress. It may that you have overactive hormonal pathways which lead to excessive cortisol secretion and hence, difficulties with falling asleep. It may also result from being chronically stressed and anxious or being administered steroid drugs for other medical conditions.
Every medication has a particular half-life that is associated with how fast it gets metabolized and excreted from the body. Many of these medications continue to be metabolized into the night even as we try to fall asleep. Another great deal is simply to have insomnia as their side effects. Consult with your doctor to see if any of the medications you take might be the source of your sleeping problems.
Overstimulation from sugar
Another thing which keeps us from experiencing our chronic fatigue is, without a doubt, sugar. If we consume carbohydrate-rich foods less than two hours before bed, it can make it difficult for us to calm our minds and fall asleep.
Our brains are regulated on an everyday basis by the “excitatory” and “inhibitory” molecules called “neurotransmitters.” They tell the brain to work more than usual or to calm down. Needless to say, if one’s neurotransmitters are not in balance, they may suffer from the subsequent insomnia. Two of the most important inhibitory neurotransmitters are gamma – aminobutyric acid, or GABA, and serotonin, and being deficient in either of these may cause the brain to work too hard and make it more difficult for you to fall asleep.
Certainly, the most common stimulant on the planet is caffeine. It affects our bodies in a particular manner—it increases blood pressure and heart rate, stimulating us to be more alert and energetic. Drinking coffee and other caffeine-containing beverages in the second half of the day may be the source of one’s sleep problems.
Drinking right before sleep
Drinking any beverages right before going sleep may be especially problematic for you if you have an overactive bladder or other similar conditions. It will make you easily wake up at night in order to urinate. Try to keep that in mind when grabbing a drink.
- Melatonin – To regulate and balance your natural inbuilt clock; since it is natural, it does not cause any lingering effects or daytime drowsiness. Moreover, it possesses excellent antioxidant and immunity boosting properties.
- 5HTP, serotonin precursor – Another natural substance that can act as the inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, making it fall asleep more easily.
- GABA – Acts similarly to 5HTP, the substance mentioned above.
Hormones are the communicative substances between the organ systems. If their balance is disrupted, it has serious consequences, including chronic tiredness and fatigue.
Here are the hormones that impact one’s sleep patterns the most:
The thyroid hormones, T3 and T4, produced by the thyroid gland, are stimulated by the thyroid stimulating hormone (or TSH), which is produced by the anterior pituitary gland. These hormones are responsible for fueling the metabolism, hence, adding to the individual’s strength and energy. When there are too many of them, one will be restless and may suffer from insomnia. At the same time, it is easy to imagine that deficiencies of these hormones will result in the very opposite—sleepiness, tiredness, and an overall slower and less efficient metabolism. Other symptoms may include weight gain, low basal temperature, constipation, hair loss, and depression. It is important to get all three of the mentioned hormones checked in order to rule these issues out as the source of tiredness.
Adrenal hormones: cortisol
Mentioned earlier, cortisol is a stress hormone responsible for the so-called “fight-or-flight” response. It fuels our body and gives us the energy we need during stressful times. Its deficiency, on the other hand, results in a low temperature, sluggishness, and tiredness throughout the day. It can also cause low blood sugar and increase irritability. Testing one’s cortisol levels is important when searching for the root cause of one’s chronic fatigue. If they turn out to be an issue, the appropriate treatment should be evaluated and implemented by the doctor. Possible therapies include Cortef (Hydrocortisone tablets) or licorice drops. In terms of treating and repairing the adrenal gland, I recommend intravenous chronic fatigue drip, which contains an adrenal support injection, along with several minerals and vitamins like Ca, Mg, Zn, Cr, Se, Cu, Vitamin B, Vitamin C, etc. The minerals and vitamins serve as the raw materials to rebuild the gland.
Adrenal hormones: aldosterone
Aldosterone is responsible for salt and water retention in the body. If one is deficient in it, they urinate offen, losing valuable nutrients, and suffering from low blood pressure and lightheadedness. Florinef may be prescribed to patients who are severely deficient in it.
Sex hormones: DHEA, testosterone, estrogen, progesterone
Deficiency in sex hormones may be an important cause of recurrent tiredness. While most people are familiar with testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone, not many may have heard of DHEA. Namely, DHEA is the precursor of the rest, being produced by the adrenal glands hence also playing a contributing role in the balancing of sex hormones. If one is deficient in the mentioned hormones, supplementing them will be the most efficient therapy. According to which particular hormone is lacking, an appropriate replacement therapy should be implemented.
Fighting an infection is a tiresome, demanding process. When looking for the source of your tiredness, ruling out an ongoing infection is an important step.
You should consider the following options:
Look for simultaneous achiness, chills, headaches or even migraines, low-grade fevers, nausea, night sweats, enlarged lymph nodes or anything unusual that draws your attention. Furthermore, it is important to correlate any recently undergone invasive procedures like surgeries.
- Urinary tract infection
- Gynecological infection
- GI tract infection
- Infection of the joints
- Dental infection
- Respiratory system infection
- Skin infections
The infection can be either viral, bacterial, fungal, or parasitic. It is important to take appropriate tests in order to identify its cause. You may have to take a blood test, urine test, sputum/stool culture, or a swab and/or saliva test.
Possible treatments for an infection
Depending on the cause of the infection, the appropriate medication should be prescribed, including antibiotics, antifungal, or antiparasitic drugs. Other possible treatments include:
- IV H202 treatments – H2020 creates a
high-oxygen environment in which the
microorganisms cannot survive, which makes it
an effective agent against them.
- Ozone therapy – Combining ozone with one’s oxygen-rich blood creates a powerful mixture, beneficial when curing multiple diseases, including chronic infections.
Undoubtedly, nutrition plays a pivotal role in our wellbeing, as what we feed ourselves with, serves as our fuel to get through the day and feel good about ourselves. Deficiencies in various minerals and vitamins may make us feel sluggish, tired, or unmotivated and cause an inability to focus.
The vitamins and elements that affect our energy levels
to the greatest degree, and therefore should be tested,
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin B12
- Folic acid
According to the test results, a high-dose supplementation may be needed. Another important but related issue is possible intoxication with heavy metals or other deleterious substances which end up in one’s circulation from eating even unseemingly processed foods. One may be totally unaware of having loads of mercury, aluminum, cadmium, lead, and other metals in their circulation while they continue to cause damage to various tissues and organs. Another especially detrimental thing about heavy metals is that, without proper help, they do not get freely excreted from the body; instead, they tend to accumulate inside it, reaching substantial concentrations over a period of time. For affected patients, I recommend:
- DMPS treatment as this effectively chelates mercury
- EDTA treatment, which rather than focusing on one type of metal or toxin, is more of a universal chelating process
Later on, after undergoing a specific therapy, I usually have my patients do a Heavy Metal Challenge Test that helps measure the effectiveness of the treatment.
One may also be unaware of food allergies, especially if the accompanying symptoms after eating a certain food are not intense but rather light – a patient might experience gas, heartburn, bloating, reflux, dyspepsia, cramps, diarrhea, constipation, various skin rashes, skin reddening (erythema), skin flushes, a metallic taste in the mouth or even get depressed.
On the other hand, severe symptoms that make an allergy extremely clear are shortness of breath; swelling of the larynx, tongue, and throat; intense, widely distributed skin flushes and/or rashes, as well as general skin itching. When an individual suffers from an undiagnosed allergy, their body is constantly mobilized into “fight mode,” which tires them out, makes them chronically sleepy, unmotivated, and, as earlier mentioned, even can make them depressed.
If suspecting a food allergy, doing appropriate tests is crucial. The Common Food Allergy Test embraces 96 different foods, including the most common allergens like diary, gluten, nuts, eggs, seafood, poultry, meats, vegetables, etc., and measures IgG antibody levels against them—such an approach not only lets you know if you have a food allergy or not but also measures the degrees of it. Later on, an adjusted diet should be implemented as well as, in certain cases, bioenzymes can be regularly taken to facilitate the digestion of particular foods.
Undeniably, mental health is crucial to one’s overall wellbeing as well as finds its reflection in one’s physical health. The body and the mind do not work separately, but they do work together. Because of that, altered mood makes up an important, essential factor that needs to be taken into consideration while determining one’s reason for chronic fatigue and tiredness.
Below, various aspects are presented that contribute significantly to emotional health.
Neurotransmitter imbalance is an underlying cause of conditions varying from chronic stress, through anxiety to severe depression. Substances like serotonin, noradrenaline, GABA, and dopamine play the key roles here. Unfortunately, it is hard to accurately determine which particular neurotransmitter is deficient. Hence, for example, complex IV Amino Acid can be implemented so that the body can be used for its own needs. The treatment is amazingly restoring and potentially balancing.
Certainly, serious, disturbing events in our lives may be distressing, overwhelming, and hence hard to cope with. They may drain people mentally, causing constant fatigue from the overload of emotions. As said earlier, mental health reflects itself in physical health. In this case, the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) can be helpful. It utilizes a light tapping technique combined with verbalizing the identified problem, followed by a general affirmation phrase. Such a therapy genially rebalances the system and effectively relieves psychological stress and pain. Its aim is for the child to be free from the overflow of moods and emotions.
This is one of the most common reasons for tiredness in today’s modern society, yet it can also mask other ongoing, underlying problems. When work overload results in recurrent fatigue, it is chronic, long-lasting, and overwhelming. One can see a strong correlation between performing tasks and mood alteration as well as resulting tiredness and energy loss.
If you suffer from chronic fatigue and tiredness, it is possible that there is more to it than you suspect. Since feeling good about yourself is vital in life, it is important to observe yourself closely and note down any seemingly alarming symptoms. Determining the root of the problem can easily make an enormous difference and improve your quality of life. I encourage you to pay attention to the signals that your body sends to you.