Why Do I Constantly Feel So Tired?
If you always feel tired there are several possible different reasons for it, varying from physical and mental conditions to lifestyle, diet and new developments in your lifestyle.
MAIN REASONS FOR ALWAYS BEING TIRED
Physical: Seasonal affective disorder (SAD), a current or recently had illness, pregnant, adrenal function failure, coeliac disease, chronic pain, chronic fatigue syndrome, sleep apnoea, cardiovascular disease, thyroid problems, diabetes, glandular fever, anaemia, restless legs and being over or underweight can all make you feel tired.
Psychological: Depression, stress, boredom, excitement, anxiety and grief are all conditions which can make you feel more tired.
Lifestyle: If you’re not getting enough sleep (should aim for minimum 7 hours per night) due to excessive partying or other reasons. Stressful changes in your life such as moving home, financial problems or marital/relationship issues may make you feel tired. Not getting enough exercise or jet lag can also cause tiredness.
Diet: A poor diet can lead to vitamin, mineral or protein deficiencies which will lead to tiredness.
Employment: If you have irregular sleep patterns (shift workers) of are having to work long hours.
Babies and small children: New parents often get irregular and less sleep causing tiredness.
Some of the list above are easy to spot and others not so. If you can’t see anything obvious then you should contact your doctor to ensure there aren’t underlying reasons for you being tired. You should also pay close attention to your diet.
Maintain energy through the day by eating regular meals and healthy snacks every three to four hours, as opposed to taking large meals less often. Begin the day with breakfast (even if just a light one), have a mid-morning snack, lunch, a mid-afternoon snack and an evening meal.
Be mindful of your alcohol consumption. Although a drink or two in the evening can help you fall asleep, you don’t sleep as deeply and this can cause you to be tired the next day.
Drink plenty of water. Sometimes feeling fatigued can be caused by dehydration.
BEST FOODS FOR ENERGY
Vitamin B: whole grains, organ meats, sweet potatoes, avocados, egg yolks & fish. Oatstraw and nettle infusions are efficient sources of B vitamins.
Vitamin C: good levels found in cantaloupe, citrus fruit & juices, kiwi, pineapple, strawberries, raspberries, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, green and red peppers, spinach, and tomatoes. Cooking reduces the retention of vitamin C in food. Microwaving or steaming foods increases retention.
People who are tired require more high-quality nutrition including good fats in their diet, especially natural sources of vitamin E such as avocados, peanut butter, sunflower seeds, tahini, and olive oil. Herbs packed with vitamin E include nettle, seaweeds, dandelion, and watercress.
Celery, cabbage, seaweeds, nettle infusion, & red clover infusion are superb sources of potassium which energise quickly.
It’s possible that you need to increase your intake of iron if you’re anaemic. Eat a spoonful of molasses or take a dropper of yellow dock tincture several times a day. Good food sources of iron include: seaweeds, nettle infusion, dandelion leaves, coco powder, chocolate, tahini, broccoli, spinach, sun dried tomatoes, chicken, parsley, turkey, roasted pumpkin and squash seeds, sunflower seeds, kale, lentils, watercress, toasted sesame seeds, cooked egg yolks, apricots (fresh or dried), fish, red meat and haricot beans.
The list of foods below are naturally high in vitamins and minerals that will help you sustain energy throughout the day: 1. Peanut butter 2. Live-culture yoghurt with dried apricots 3. Slightly under ripe banana 4. Cheese and oatcakes 5. Turkey breast sandwich 6. Hard-boiled egg 7. Chicken and spinach salad on wholewheat pita bread 8. Pasta and lentil salad 9. Baked potato with low-fat cheese topping 10. A small handful of walnuts and almonds 11. Porridge
SUPPLEMENTING YOUR DIET
If getting nutrition through your diet is difficult for you or if you would like to an easier solution then there are a variety of supplements and herbs that help combat fatigue. If you always feel tired then these supplement suggestions might help:
Superfoods – this is a label given to a group of foods that have higher nutritional values than other foods and are easily absorbed and used by the body. This makes them a superior sources of energy. Examples include acai berry, maqui berry, alfalfa, wheat grass and spirulina but there are lots more. You can also find superfood combination supplements with a number of different supers blended into one.
Multi-vitamins – with modern lifestyle, diet and farming methods it’s commonly accepted that most of us would benefit from a daily multi-vitamin and mineral supplement. Vitamin and mineral deficiency reduces your energy levels and a good multi-vitamin can combat this. Food form multivitamin capsules are more easily absorbed by the body than standard manufactured synthetic vitamins.
Asian Ginseng – for example Siberian Ginseng, Korean Ginseng or Chinese Ginseng. This herb has been used for thousands of years for its health maintenance properties and is known to support healthy energy production.
Co Q 10 – known as the ‘energy spark plug’ and vital for the process of energy production. This is difficult to attain in sufficient quantities from natural diet and, as our levels deplete from the age of 20, supplementing with CoQ10 is a great way to increase energy.
Before taking supplements for tiredness you should consult your GP to rule out medical causes for the tiredness.
As you can see there are many different reasons for you to be feeling tired. It is important to assess the reasons and rule out what you can. Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to go an see your doctor to rule out hiddent reasons for fatigue. In most cases you will be able to boost your energy levels with a mixture of lifestyle and nutritional adjustments.