So many of us battle through the day just to make it to bed at night and finally feel a sense of relief. I made it! I cannot even begin to count the number of times I hear a snigger to the question 'do you wake refreshed'? - its a foreign concept to some and I feel for those as there is no greater rain on your parade then fatigue. Thankfully, it does not have to be that way, a few simple tweaks to lifestyle and diet can make the world of difference and put a spring back in your step. If looking to break away from the cloud of fatigue, here are the best places to start:
Get a Comprehensive Health Assessment from your GP
Any new symptom should be appropriately explored, your Doctor may check for
- Iron and/or B12 deficiency
- Acute or chronic infection
- low thyroid function
- Blood sugar dysregulation
- Coeliac disease
Assess your Diet
Take 5 and ask yourself:
Am I eating enough protein? Without enough protein we may not feel satisfied, constantly hungry and send our blood sugar on a crazy ride.
Aim for 1-2 x serve* of protein at each meal:
- 200g natural yoghurt
- 2 boiled eggs
- 100-150g chicken, fish, lamb, beef etc
- ½ - 1 cup lentils
- ½ cup chickpeas, red kidney beans, cannellini beans
- 1 cup of milk
- ½ cup cottage cheese
- 50g cheese
* please note individual quantities will vary
Have you recently lowered or cut out carbs? Everybody needs some carbs and our thyroid (hello energy maker) requires a certain amount to function optimally. Carbs are also a source of B-vitamins, which help convert our food into energy. If your carbs are low for a particular reason, supplementing with an active B complex may assist fatigue and prevent deficiencies.
Are you eating enough full stop? Our body is energy hungry and we must fill the tank to get from A to B in good form. Have a look at your overall diet and make sure you aren’t slowly making restrictions to the detriment of your energy and overall wellbeing.
Hone in on Gut Health
You may be putting the goods in but is your body actually receiving and using what's being given? Making sure we are digesting and absorbing the nutrients from foods is important – signs you may not be:
- Irregular appetite (excessive or non-existent)
- Loose bowel motions or more excessive bowel motions
- Constipation – slow transit time
- Excessive bloating
Seeking assistance to get to the bottom of gut problems is important, as a healthy functioning gut is key to health! And definitely achievable.
Check in with your Emotions
A large part of the fatigue puzzle is emotional turmoil. It may not even be excessive stress that you are feeling, it’s just a lack of joy, passion or purpose, which can all contribute to low mood and fatigue.
3 tips to make peace with your emotions:
- Socialise – laugh, have a good time! Being in company you enjoy is an instant mood booster
- Accept and be content with where you are at, you may not have reached your goals, but merely knowing you are well on the way should and is good enough
- Celebrate and appreciate the little things, whether it be your coffee in the morning, a text to your best friend or coming home to a warm dinner with loved ones, it’s the small acts that make us the happiest and shape who we are
To help support your body during times of excess stress, B-Vitamins, magnesium and Vitamin C powder may also be of assistance.
Please don't accept poor energy and feelings of fatigue, it is often a sign something is not as it should be and it doesn't have to be the case. And 'soldering on' is not good advice!
Casey Dick | Passionate Dedicated Natural Nutritionist | Brisbane, Australia, Dietary Nutritionist, Healthy Body and Mind Advocate, Natural Hormone Balance & Healthy Weight Loss, Natural Skin Health, Anorexia, Eating Disorder Recovery, Orthorexia, Thyroid, Non-dieting Approach, Gut Health, Nutritionist specialises in PCOS, Why can’t I lose weight, Weight Loss Resistance