Mayo Clinic defines fatigue as follows:
“[Fatigue, or unrelenting exhaustion, is] a nearly constant state of weariness that develops over time and reduces your energy, motivation, and concentration. Fatigue at this level impacts your emotional and psychological well-being, too.”1
As people in a fast-paced, modern world, we’ve all felt this in our bones. What’s frustrating, though, is that we often don’t know the reasons for our fatigue. Sure, we’re all busy, but sometimes it goes beyond the exhaustion that comes with activity. We find ourselves overwhelmed by routine daily tasks and don’t know why we seem to need more and more rest. A full night of sleep (if we can get it) just doesn’t seem like enough when morning comes.
Seeing as how so many people suffer from the same situation, it stands to reason that there are common underlying reasons for fatigue. They are things that show up in our lives often enough and clearly enough for us all to be able to find them. With the proper tools, it’s almost as easy to overcome them.
Stress and The Three T’s
Do any of us know someone who isn’t stressed? Let’s add another aspect to this question: stress isn’t just mental or emotional. If you’ve been involved with chiropractic for any length of time, you’re probably aware of the three T’s: Trauma, Toxins, and Thoughts.
With stress in mind as a possible cause of fatigue, we can look at the three T’s like this: chemical, mental, and physical.
When people hear the word “stress,” they normally think of the mental kind. This is understandable, as it’s something a lot of people are feeling more and more of these days. Our thoughts most definitely affect our mental health and physical state.
Physical traumas can lead to stress in the body. That stress can be anywhere—from the joints, to systemic, to muscular or skeletal. It can cause inflammation, be broken bones, organ dysfunction, or strained muscles. Anything that makes your body work harder than it should need to.
The toll stress takes on your mind and body makes it easy to see why your stress is one of the reasons for your fatigue.
Let’s be honest. Water can get a bad rap. There’s nothing there to catch the attention of our entertainment-craving brains. So, a lot of us reach for something more interesting to satisfy our thirst. Unfortunately, not all drinks are created equal, and while you might think you’re staving off this source of your low energy, you may actually be making it worse.
Dehydration is one of the reasons for fatigue that most of us are more aware of. The problem comes when we call things like coffee or alcohol “hydrating” when, in fact, they’re the opposite. Other obstacles to fixing dehydration come from the mistakes many of us don’t know we’re making, and when our water itself is unhealthy and toxic.
Check out these infusion recipes to stave off this reason for fatigue.
These days, it seems like a new diet comes out every other week. Someone on Twitter found the secret to a movie star body. An Instagram influencer is jacked and has a new meal plan everyone must try.
The problem is that everyone’s body reacts differently to different things. This is where food allergies come in. Food allergies can cause inflammation, irritability, and constipation. They are another reason for fatigue.
Inflammation is your body’s immune system kicking into gear and having a noticeable problem with something you ate. It can show itself as swelling, muscle pain, headaches, joint pain, and other discomforts. Inflammation can also be hidden—you may not even know it’s there until it’s gone, or it causes a bigger problem like a chronic disorder.
Some foods are naturally inflammatory, and we at the Wellness Way suggest you stay away from them —dairy, gluten, and sugar are among them. This is why none of the recipes we post use these ingredients.
When your body launches the immune response of inflammation, it’s waging war with invading toxins, meaning it needs to put more energy and effort toward fighting them off than usual, leaving you with low energy levels. Inflammation is one more reason for fatigue.
Exercising Too Much
Everybody likes to be seen as having their life together. An easy way to do that is through posting gym selfies, workout regimens, and “gains.”
When you work out, you’re pushing your body past where you think it can go. You’re making it work harder than it wants to. It goes back to the physical stress—you’re making it work harder than normal, so it has to take longer than normal to bounce back. That’s not bad if you work up to it or give your body breaks to heal itself. But what happens if you don’t take a break and instead push it past what it can handle every day without giving it a chance to rest and recuperate? Your body will give out on you and demand that rest.
Did you know exercising also changes your hormone balance? If you exercise too much, it can be detrimental to the things your hormones control.
Exercising Too Little
On the flip side, under-exercising won’t challenge your body enough. When we exercise and move around–especially when we cross our midline–we build neuronal pathways. The brain also has to wake up enough to tell our body to move as it gets the blood and oxygen flowing. The lymph system can then carry out the toxins and trash that may be bogging our minds and bodies down. Talk about the endorphins released! What about the fresh air and sunshine on a walk? There are so many benefits to the right kind of exercise. Not to mention all the other benefits exercising gives you.2
Exercising helps connect those neuronal pathways, clears toxins, and brings more oxygen to your cells as it builds your body up. Then under-exercising could possibly be a reason for fatigue. The good news is that it’s one of the causes of fatigue you can easily do something about.
Other Meds You May Be Taking
How many ads for medications or drugs have you seen that listed fatigue or possible fatigue as one of the side effects? Because we hear it so often, it’s very easy to become deaf to it. Check your medication’s side effects to see if that could be one of the reasons for your fatigue. Things like statin drugs, antihistamines, blood pressure medication, diuretics, and anti-depressants are common culprits. Why would an anti-depressant be a reason for fatigue? Here at the Wellness Way, we compare the body to a finely tuned Swiss watch. It is perfectly calibrated with all the pieces in place. If you force a piece work differently than it’s meant to, it will affect all parts of the body, not just that one. To discover more possible reasons for your fatigue, check out this article, or watch this video about chronic fatigue. To recalibrate your Swiss watch and get it ticking the right way again, schedule a visit to your local Wellness Way clinic.