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Tired of Being Tired? Ready for a Change?

Often when people find they are chronically tired, they seek to find the “one reason” that may be the culprit. It is hard to feel good, enthusiastic, or productive when we are dragging energy wise day after day. If we are going to thrive we need good energy!

Like most things, there is often more than one thing at play that are contributing factors to chronically feeling fatigued. Here are some to consider. Many of these are within your control, and some may be beyond your control, but you won’t know what is possible until you choose one area to make a change, and then pay attention to any subtle differences.

Here are some areas to pay attention to and consider if they may be a factor for you in your low energy.

1. Sleep- While lack of sleep may seem the most obvious reason your energy is lagging, it is really important to focus on both quantity of sleep as well as quality of sleep. Most adults require 7-8 solid hours of sleep. If you wake up to use the bathroom and you are able to fall right back to sleep, that generally is not a problem. If on the other hand you have a hard time staying asleep, pay attention to things like what and when you eat (avoid food in the last hour before bed time and avoid alcohol consumption within a few hours of bedtime also.) Be sure to sleep in a dark cool room and ensure your pet is not the cause of ongoing disturbances in your sleep.

2. Diet and Nutrition- This is an area that far too many people ignore. The quality of our diet determines a lot of things and has a profound affect on our mood, immune system and energy. If we are eating the SAD- (standard American diet) then we are eating too much sugar (a huge energy zapper) salt, fried stuff, fast food, soda – all the things that make us feel sluggish. When we eat closer to nature and further from the factory we can enjoy a better quality of life, as well as improved energy!

3. Stress- Chronic stress robs us of many things, and energy is just one. The more we allow ourselves to be stressed out all the time the less energy we have for the things that really matter. When we get stressed, stress hormones go careening in our body. It is exhausting to live stressed out too much of the time. There are so many ways to learn to manage your feelings of stress. Consult friends, apps like Calm, or Breethe, or find a life coach or counselor to help you with this.

4. Lack of Boundaries- When we are not good at setting boundaries with people, we often take on too much, and therefore in our “I have to do it all” mindset can become exhausted. Boundaries make life better. Learn how and when to set them so you can learn to give people a good and confident no when needed.

5. Lack of Iron- Lacking in iron can lead to a host of symptoms such as heart palpitations, dizziness, lightheadedness, and drum roll… a lot of fatigue. If you suspect this may be an issue for you, add some spinach to your diet, and consult your physician to check your iron levels.

6. Thyroid problems- The thyroid is a pretty important little gland in the neck that controls a lot of things. If someone is hypothyroid, they may experience many symptoms such as hair loss, sensitivity to cold, unexplained weight gain, and fatigue!

If you have any family history of thyroid disorders, and / or you suspect this may be an issue, have your physician run a full thyroid panel to determine if this is a problem for you.

Additional underlying causes or contributing factors of fatigue and low energy can be depression, side effects of certain medications, or supplements. Undiagnosed medical conditions can also have low energy or fatigue as a symptom so it is important to get checked if your chronic tiredness is still ongoing after making changes to your sleep habits, diet, and managing your stress. Especially if you have other signs or symptoms besides fatigue, it is important to get checked by a competent physician.

Check out the Live Well Kitsap site to see options for docs! www.livewellkitsap.com/mind-your-health.

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