Fatigue is weariness and a lack of energy. It also causes a lack of motivation. Sufferers of the condition feel tired all the time – in both body and mind. There are some things you can do to avoid fatigue or to relieve the fatigue symptoms you may be experiencing.
Making changes to your eating habits can reduce fatigue. These changes include things you should eat and drink as well as foods and beverages you should limit or avoid:
- Avoid dehydration by drinking plenty of water. Carrying a water bottle and keeping it by you throughout the day encourages you to drink it.
- Avoid too much caffeine. Although one or two caffeinated drinks such as soda, coffee, or tea during the day can boost your mental alertness and energy level, consuming more than that actually reduces your performance level. Heavy caffeine consumption also promotes irritability and feelings of anxiety.
- Make time for breakfast. Foods rich in carbohydrates boost your metabolism and gives your body energy to burn. Glucose is the fuel your brain needs to function.
- Avoid skipping meals. What you eat turns into glucose, the blood sugar that keeps your energy level constant throughout the day.
- Avoid fad or crash diets.When you cut back the amount of carbohydrates you eat, you body can’t make enough energy for your daily needs. These types of diets also starve your body of vital vitamins, minerals and trace elements.
- Change the number of times you eat during the day. Over eating and larger meals can drain your energy. Several smaller meals throughout the day keep your blood sugar level constant which gives you energy all day long. Eating several meals a day also promotes burning more body fat.
It is no surprise feelings of fatigue can result from your sleeping habits. Not getting enough sleep and the lack of restful sleep are strong contributors to fatigue symptoms. Some the changes you can make might include:
- Go to bed earlier. You should make whatever changes you can in your daily routine to allow you to get the 8 hours of sleep every adult body needs.
- Cut back on caffeine. Insomnia can be caused by beverages containing caffeine. Drinking soda, coffee, or tea after dinner is a practice to be avoided.
- Learn to relax and shut your brain off. The wrong type of thinking at night can cause insomnia. Allowing your brain to dwell on your problems or some upset that happened during the day will probably just drive sleep away. Relaxation techniques that banish the worrying and quiet your mind will make it easier for you to fall asleep.
- Avoid the use of sleeping pills. Sleeping pills only address the symptoms of your sleeping problems not the cause. They may help initially, but your body will eventually build up a tolerance to them. Some sleeping pills can be addictive.
Small steps and lifestyle changes can go a long way towards eliminating your feelings of fatigue. Some of the lifestyle changes you can consider to cut down on the feeling of fatigue include:
- Quit smoking. Smokers typically have lower energy levels than non-smokers. The harmful substances found in cigarette smoke sap your body’s energy. Smoking increases the amount of carbon monoxide in your bloodstream. The carbon monoxide crowds out the amount of oxygen available to your cells. Your cells take oxygen from your blood to burn glucose and produce energy.
- Get moving. Physical activity boosts energy levels. Your work day probably does not include much physical activity. Your brain may be tired but your body is not. Coming home and sitting on the couch after eating your evening meal is not a good combination. Physical activity can decrease depression and anxiety as well as encourage you to sleep better at night.
- Consult your physician for advice. Your doctor can advise you about the safe starting level of activity for your own medical circumstances. If you have a substance abuse problem with alcohol or recreational drugs or any other type of drug, this would be a good time to seek help. Both contribute to fatigue symptoms.
- Confront your workplace issues. Problem at work like conflicts and demanding hours increase your stress levels and can cause burnout. All three can cause fatigue. You can take steps to address your work problems by making an appointment with your human resources officer.
Researchers estimate as many as 50 and up to 80 percent of fatigue cases stem from psychological factors. Some of the suggestions for dealing withthese issues include:
- Take an honest look at your lifestyle. You may have problems in areas of your life that are causing you high levels of stress or causing you to feel anxious or depressed. All of these may cause or contribute to your fatigue symptoms. Counseling can help you resolve some of these issues. Working out these issues may reduce your feelings of fatigue.
- Learn to do nothing. The modern lifestyle is fast paced and exhausting. There never seems to be enough hours in the day. You may find yourself under pressure to accomplish something every moment. Even during those times that should be down time for you. The drive to accomplish more raises your anxiety levels which increases your feelings of fatigue. It is a vicious cycle. Your body needs time to relax and recoup. You should evaluate your priorities and commitments to carve out more time to allow your body to relax. Relaxation techniques may teach you to break the stress response of pumping adrenaline into your system even when you’re trying to take it easy and relearn the joys of just hanging out.
- Put the fun back in your life. A life full of stress, pressures, and commitments has very little room in it for fun. Not only is laughter healthy for you, it is a great energy booster.