Do you drag yourself out of bed every morning to go to work? Do you always feel tired and low in energy no matter how long you sleep? Are you unhappy and depressed because you cannot cope with your daily chores, work and family requirements? If your answer is yes to one or more of these questions, you are most probably a victim of the plague of modern life called chronic fatigue.
Chronic fatigue can have so many causes at its root cause ranging from stress to serious health conditions or diseases. As an Oakville holistic nutritionist, I’ll discuss the most common causes that I see with my clients in my holistic nutrition practice in Oakville.
6 Common Causes of Chronic Fatigue
Sleep is important for your body to rest, detoxify and regenerate its cells. If your sleep is compromised either because you are not sleeping enough hours at night or you have problems falling asleep or staying asleep, this can have a toll on your general health, mood and your energy levels throughout the day. The cumulative effects of poor sleep can overtime contribute to chronic fatigue.
2-Chronic Stress and /or Adrenal Exhaustion
Chronic stress at work or in your personal life, will put an extra burden on your body organs especially the adrenal glands which produce the stress hormones cortisol and adrenalin to help your body adapt to stress. These hormones control the fight or flight response which is originally designed to help us either fight or escape from a life threatening situation.
However, nowadays our bodies cannot differentiate between a real threat and a simple stressful situation, thus putting us in a fight or flight response all the time. This causes extra consumption of nutrients leading to nutrient deficiencies as well as exhausts our adrenal glands. This is usually reflected in a state of chronic fatigue and other symptoms such as anxiety, restlessness, allergies and sleep problems.
You might be surprised to know that chronic indigestion can be a serious condition that wreaks havoc on your health. This is simply because we are not only what we eat but more precisely what we digest and absorb. If you are not digesting your food well, you won’t be able to absorb and assimilate all the essential vitamins and minerals that are required for the function of the energy producing metabolic enzymes in your body.
Moreover, when food is undigested in the stomach it gets fermented in the colon by the action of bad bacteria producing toxic chemicals and gas and creating an unhealthy environment that encourages overgrowth of bad bacteria, yeast and parasites. If these toxins get reabsorbed into the blood they contribute to a state of chronic toxicity and inflammation in the body that causes degeneration of cells, aging and paves the way for serious chronic disease.
Anemia is defined as having a hemoglobin level in the blood below the normal for your age and sex. Anemia can be due to inadequate red blood cell formation caused by nutrient deficiencies such as iron or vitamin B12, or due to excessive destruction of red blood cells as in autoimmune diseases or due to chronic disease conditions like cancer which cause a form of anemia called anemia of chronic disease (AOCD). Hemoglobin is the iron containing molecule in your red blood cells that is responsible for oxygen transfer to your tissues and cells. With low hemoglobin levels, there is low tissue oxygenation and low energy production.
5-Under-Active Thyroid Gland
The thyroid gland is the small butterfly structure at the front base of your neck. This gland produces the thyroid hormones which have so many functions in the body including regulation of metabolism and energy production. The thyroid gland can become sluggish or underactive if your diet doesn’t provide adequate amounts of essential nutrients such as iodine, selenium, zinc and protein necessary for the formation of the thyroid hormones. Its function can also be compromised by chronic stress and toxins such as fluoride and heavy metals
Your liver is the most important organ in the body after the heart and it is considered the organ for vitality in traditional Chinese medicine. It performs over 500 functions and is considered the major detoxification organ in the body. The liver is the main organ that detoxifies external and internal toxins in the body and allowing their excretion out of the body by the colon or kidney. The complex detoxification process occurring in the liver requires adequate amounts of vitamins, antioxidants and phytonutrients. If your diet is deficient in essential nutrients or you are exposed to too many toxins, your liver will get sluggish and toxins which will eventually be stored in the body causing tissue inflammation and degeneration.
Fatty liver is also a very common health issue that is usually caused by obesity, an unhealthy diet and nutrient deficiencies. Fatty liver causes abnormal fat metabolism by the liver and can contributes to difficulty losing weight and low energy.
From a holistic health view, most physical health issues have emotional blocks at their root causes. It has been scientifically proven time and again that our thought s are transformed into emotions and that our emotions control the function of our physical body through the release of psych-neuropeptides by the hypothalamus gland in the brain. These molecules constantly give our cells and tissues an update of our emotional state and trigger the production of hormones as well as affects our immune system.
As a holistic nutritionist in Oakville, I find that negative emotions such as anger, resentment, guilt, shame and fear, produce blocks in our energy system. And this block of flow usually causes a state of chronic fatigue and can overtime lead to chronic disease conditions.
Baseline, if you are experiencing chronic fatigue that sleep cannot correct, I recommend consulting with your doctor first to exclude any medical condition. The next step is to deal with stress, cleanse your diet, eat more raw foods and check with your holistic nutritionist or holistic health practitioner to pinpoint any nutrient deficiencies or organ under-function that can be an underlying factor of your chronic fatigue.
Based on my holistic nutrition expertise, I find that a targeted nutrition and lifestyle plan and some simple energy exercises can bring your body back into balance and ensure life-long unlimited energy and vitality.