No matter how much sleep you get, you drag yourself through the day, feeling worn out and exhausted. Today’s busy world can take a toll on our health, our lives, and our energy levels.
There are a number of reasons why more people are fatigued now than ever before. Today, we’re going to explore the causes of fatigue and what you can do about it.
We’re also going to list the top 10 natural remedies for fatigue to help you feel more alert and ready to take on your busy life.
What Are Some Medical Reasons For Fatigue?
It’s normal for everyone to have an “off day” here and there or to occasionally feel fatigued, especially when you are not able to sleep normally.
However, extreme tiredness and overwhelming exhaustion are not normal, and a visit with your doctor is recommended to rule out serious medical conditions.
It’s surprising how many health issues list fatigue as a symptom. Only specific medical tests can rule out diseases and health issues like the following:
A doctor can check for this with a simple blood test. A common type of anemia called iron-deficiency anemia can make you feel tired, get dizzy when you stand up, have brain fog, and possibly cause heart palpitations.
Iron transports oxygen in your blood, and if you have a deficiency of the mineral, you may be subject to anemia.
Because your body is not able to fuel itself, it’s not surprise that fatigue is a common side-effect of untreated diabetes.
The thyroid is a small, butterfly-shaped gland that produces hormones that regulate how energy is used.
When the thyroid is not functioning properly, it can cause extreme fatigue, feelings of sluggishness, and slowed reflexes.
Feeling exhausted and tired is a common symptom of congestive heart failure. When the heart doesn’t pump as well as it should, fatigue can become an issue.
With congestive heart failure, fatigue usually worsens during exercise and you may have swelling in your arms or legs and possible shortness of breath.
This sleeping disorder prevents you from getting enough oxygen while sleeping. It also inhibits good expulsion of carbon dioxide, which can cause you to wake in an alarmed state.
Many people don’t remember the several times per night that the brain alerts them to awaken, so it may be hard to figure out why you’re so tired the next morning.
Sleep apnea also interferes with REM sleep, the deepest part of the sleep cycle, making you feel tired throughout the day.
Women experiencing menopause may have difficulty getting enough sleep due to changing hormonal levels that can interrupt the natural sleep cycle.
Symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats can also cause many disruptions during the night, leaving you yawning and tired the next morning.
Depression will lower overall energy and will leave you feeling tired throughout the day. People suffering from depression may also find it difficult to fall asleep at night and stay asleep until the alarm goes off.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
This disorder is hard to diagnose and your doctor will do extensive testing to rule out other diseases before treating for CFS.
There is no known cure, but with a treatment plan designed by your doctor, symptoms, including extreme fatigue, can be improved.
The main symptom is overwhelming tiredness and fatigue that lasts for longer than 6 months. There are many other symptoms associated with chronic fatigue syndrome including pain in multiple joints, muscle pain, and sleep issues.
Common Reasons You May Feel Fatigued
So, you’ve been to the doctor and have ruled out any serious medical conditions that could be responsible for your feelings of extreme fatigue and tiredness.
There may be some other very common reasons for your fatigue:
- Not getting enough sleep
- Not sleeping properly
- Lack of exercise
- Too much stimulus at bedtime
- Environmental Factors
We have all heard for years that we should be getting at least 8 hours of sleep per night, but that may not necessarily be true.
Many adults actually only need about 6 hours of sleep and many of us function on less than that.
If you have regularly gotten 4 hours of sleep per night and you feel great, then that is how much sleep you need. On the other hand, if you get 6 hours of sleep and are constantly yawning and tired throughout your day, you are not getting enough sleep.
There are quite a few things you can do to improve the length and quality of your sleep:
What Can You Do To Improve The Quality Of Sleep?
Go to bed at the same time each night – studies have shown that our bodies respond to natural sleep rhythms, so it’s important to go to bed at the same time each night. Allow yourself 15-20 minutes to unwind and relax your mind.
Get up at the same time each morning – Some people have a tendency to want to “sleep in” on days off.
This can throw off your natural sleep cycle, so be sure to awaken at about the same time each day.
Make sure your bedroom is dark – Especially helpful for those that sleep during the day and work during the night. Use “blackout” drapes or foil your windows to keep your bedroom dark.
Do not use electronics right before bed – Many people take their smartphone or tablet to bed thinking that it will help to relax them, when just the opposite may happen.
The light from our phones and gadgets can actually trick the brain into believing that it is daylight, which tells the body that it’s time to be awake rather than winding down for the night.
Try using a fan to create “white noise” – Many times, noises can wake us from deep sleep without us even knowing about it.
When this happens several times a night, the interruptions in sleep will leave you feeling very tired the next day. White noise from a fan can help eliminate the interruptions during sleep.
Limit alcohol for several hours before bedtime – Some people think that a shot of whiskey or a glass of wine can help promote sleepiness and better quality of sleep.
The truth about alcohol is that it is a stimulant that can keep us from falling into REM sleep. Alcohol should be limited for several hours before bedtime to ensure deeper sleep.
Avoid caffeine for 6 hours preceding bedtime – Just say no to that after dinner coffee.
If you must drink a hot beverage, choose one that is caffeine free such as green tea or chamomile tea which has naturally occurring compounds that may improve sleep quality.
Limit physical activity such as exercising to morning or afternoon hours – Do not schedule exercise or workouts in the evening. Regular exercise can improve sleep duration and quality, but it needs to be completed before dinner time.
Exercise will get your adrenaline going and your heart rate up, which are two things you definitely do not want prior to bedtime.
Try meditation right before bedtime – For many people, meditation can help relax the mind and put you in a better state to achieve quality sleep. If you practice meditation in bed, many times, it will relax you to the point that you fall asleep before you finish the meditation.
Before reaching for that over-the-counter sleep aid or consulting with your doctor about prescription medication to help you sleep, there are many things you can try that might just have you and the sandman on pleasant terms.
We’ve researched some of the most common natural remedies to help you get to sleep and stay asleep longer so that you can wake feeling refreshed and ready to take on the day.
Natural Remedies to Relieve Fatigue
Diet – The food that we put in our bodies is so important in a number of different ways. In order for the body to function at optimum levels, we have to give it the nutrients to do so.
Another problem for people that are experiencing fatigue can be their weight. When we carry excess weight, it can affect many other areas of our biological system, including poor or limited sleep.
For better sleep, follow a diet that is high in fruits and vegetables and low in fat. Avoid processed foods and sugar before bed.
Exercise – Proper physical exercise is important to keep our bodies in shape and will help facilitate better sleep habits.
Limit exercise and strenuous workouts to the morning or afternoon hours. Never exercise right before bed as it can interfere with normal sleep patterns.
Meditation – Spending 10-15 minutes meditating right before bedtime can help to relax the body and the mind. Many people find that if they meditate in bed, they often will fall asleep without tossing and turning for hours.
Meditation can also help clear the worries of the day, allowing our minds to ease into sleep.
Yoga – The practice of yoga dates back more than 2000 years and can be very beneficial in reducing fatigue. Not only is it a good form of physical exercise, it also has very positive benefits to your spiritual and mental health.
Yoga can calm your mind, focus your breathing, and help tame those racing thoughts about your day.
Yoga may boost your energy and is recognized by some in the medical community as an alternative method to fight chronic fatigue syndrome.
Magnesium – Adding more magnesium to your diet through green leafy vegetables, fish, nuts, whole grains, and bananas is an easy way to increase your energy levels. Our bodies do not naturally produce magnesium, so we have to get this essential mineral from the foods we consume.
It is best to try to get vitamins and minerals from a natural food source, but if you find that this is difficult for you then you may choose to seek out a supplement.
Licorice – One of the main compounds of licorice root is glycyrrhizin, which can help your body fight fatigue.It does this because it helps to regulate cortisol levels.
Ginseng – This herb can relieve tiredness and fatigue. It has been used for hundreds of years in non-Western medicine to treat a variety of ailments and recently has been studied for its effectiveness of combatting cancer-related fatigue.
Stay Hydrated – Since our bodies are comprised of more than 50% water, it is vitally important to stay hydrated. Drinking 8-10 glasses of water per day will lead to overall better health and will increase your energy levels during the day.
Sleep with pillows under your feet – By elevating your feet during sleep you actually help blood flow to the heart and brain that can lead to deeper and more restful sleep. By sleeping deeper, you will have less fatigue during the day.
Never skip breakfast – In today’s busy world, it’s easy to forget about the most important meal of the day. Choose organic whole grain cereals with skim milk. Fruit and fruit juices can also supply hydration and vitamin C.
Eggs are also a good choice 2-3 times per week since they are rich in iron, protein, Vitamin A, folic acid and pantothenic acid.
By giving your body the proper fuel in the morning, it can help your energy levels stay constant throughout the day.
Remedies for Fatigue Review Summary
By following some of the advice outlined in this article, you can easily have more energy and feel less fatigued. Start by seeing your health care professional and ruling out any serious medical problems.
Once the doctor has given you a clean bill of health, you can start by making a few simple changes to your routine that will have you sleeping better and waking up refreshed and ready to conquer the day.
Remember that overall health begins with healthy, nutritional food and regular exercise. Incorporate both into your daily routine to have more energy, feel more alert, and sleep like a baby at night.