What To Do If You’re Tired of Being Tired
What To Do If You’re Tired of Being Tired

What To Do If You’re Tired of Being Tired

Whether it’s thanks to working long hours, family commitments or simply the day-to-day rigours of modern life, it’s not uncommon to feel tired all the time. If that sounds familiar, you might want to read this...
By Georgia Day

Is tiredness a genuinely recognised medical concept?

Despite feeling like you’re sometimes so tired that it’s all you can think about, being really, really tired is not a medically recognised condition. That said, being constantly exhausted, over and above what is deemed normal for your circumstances, may be a sign of an underlying illness or condition such as flu, glandular fever, chronic fatigue syndrome, thyroid disorders, heart disease or diabetes, so it is important that you don’t simply shrug it off. You might also hear medical professionals called about TATT or Tired All the Time, a syndrome which is often used when investigating persistent fatigue. “I describe tiredness as a lifestyle problem as it has a major impact on a person’s life and wellbeing but doesn’t show up on conventional medical blood tests or investigations,” adds Dr Sohère Roked, GP, functional medicine and hormone doctor. “The symptoms are certainly real yet there is no conventional treatment.”

What is tiredness caused by?

To help find the right treatment and approach to your fatigue, it can help to understand the root cause of why you’re feeling the way you are. While there are many obvious reasons for feeling constantly tired, such as late nights or children keeping you up, there are lots of factors that we might not even realise contribute to extreme tiredness. These include psychological traumas such as stress, depression, anxiety and bereavement. There are also plenty of physical ailments that can affect our ability to get as much sleep and rest as we need which leads to exacerbated feelings of tiredness. Sleep apnoea, B12 deficiency, anaemia, underactive thyroid, cancer treatment, pregnancy and obesity are all issues that can cause excessive tiredness and energy depletion. If you need help determining what’s contributing to your tiredness, try Sohère’s Tiredness Cure Energy Health Check, a comprehensive analytic tool that reviews different areas of your health and offers guides and a personalised health plan at the end of it.

What part do hormones play in tiredness?

Hormonal changes and imbalances can have a huge knock-on effect on the mind and body, including how tired we feel. Adrenal stress – when the adrenals are burnt out to the degree that they can no longer produce adequate levels of cortisol and adrenaline to support optimal function – is associated with prolonged periods of stress and can have a hugely detrimental effect on tiredness and energy levels. “An increase of these hormones activates the stress response (known as ‘fight or flight’) which raises the blood pressure and heart rate. [This can] can lead to fatigue or severe tiredness with intermittent crashes throughout the day,” explains Sohère. If another hormone, progesterone, is out of balance this can also increase feelings of exhaustion. “Progesterone is a hormone we make that helps with sleep, and it is low before a period, it fluctuates in perimenopause and is often low in menopause,’ she adds.

Can we eat our way out of tiredness?

Deficiencies and poor diet have a big impact on energy levels. If you’re not consuming enough nutrients your body needs to perform vital processes, then it will start to break down fat and muscle to meet its energy demands. This leads to muscle mass loss and body fat loss, which can trigger feelings of fatigue. As well as not eating enough, eating the wrong things is just as bad. If your diet is high in processed foods, it’s likely to be high in sugar which can spike blood sugar levels and interfere with sleep. Too much sugar also floods the brain with excess glucose which experts believe can lead to heighten inflammation which can trigger symptoms of fatigue and depression. Too much salt can also disturb healthy sleep patterns and cause your body to retain too much water in the wrong places, leading to feelings of lethargy and low energy.

Can supplements play a part in boosting energy?

Sensible supplementation can be effective in reducing tiredness. According to studies, 80 percent of women are deficient in magnesium, an essential mineral not just for supporting anxiety, mood and muscles but sleep too. Inessa’s Magnesium supplement is a triple source formula that combines three different types for maximum efficacy. Currently the only product available on the market to include pure marine magnesium citrate as well as magnesium bisglycinate (a form of magnesium known for being gentle on the gut and for its calming effects) and magnesium threonate, which crosses the blood brain barrier and plays an important role in the function of brain cells. Adaptogens that can support how your body copes with stress are also useful for helping you get better sleep and more of it. “Ashwagandha is an adaptogen that helps the body adapt better to stress and regulate stress hormones, helping you feel calmer which helps with sleep, mood, and energy,” adds Sohère.

How can we stop tiredness taking over our lives?

When we constantly feel exhausted it can be hard to think about anything else, and while it’s understandable, this preoccupation often only leads to more stress and worse sleep as a result. Despite busy schedules and endless to-do lists, carving out scheduled time to relax, rest and do something we enjoy is essential for boosting mood and energy long term. Both of which will lead to reduced feelings of exhaustion. “Schedule a time to relax every day, even if it is only 5-10 minutes.,” advises Sohère. “Take a few deep breaths through your nose as this helps to slow the heart rate down. Walking, hot baths, massages, reading and meditation are all simple but effective tools to help you relax. Don’t forget to have fun as we relax when we are doing things we enjoy.” Making time for movement and any strengthening exercises especially is particularly important as regular activities like this boost energy, decrease stress and make it easier to fall asleep at night.

When should we be concerned about how tired we are?

If you’ve tried myriad options with no change in how you feel, or your extreme tiredness still seems unexplained, then it’s probably time to consult your doctor. The first course of action will probably be blood tests to determine if there is an underlying cause such as anaemia. If you are getting enough sleep and still feel tired, especially on waking, it might be necessary to do some hormone testing to see whether there are imbalances causing your fatigue.

DISCLAIMER: Features published by SheerLuxe are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. Always seek the advice of your GP or another qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise or other health-related programme.

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