Beat Fatigue and Restore Your Energy With Naturopathic Medicine
Do you have difficulty waking up in the morning? Do you hit the snooze button multiple times before getting out of bed? Do you need coffee to get through your day?
Low energy, fatigue, and brain fog – these can all affect your productivity at work and your ability to enjoy life with friends and family.
As a Naturopathic Doctor, I see a lot of patients that are feeling tired but think they have to push on just to get through their day. I believe that when the root causes of fatigue are addressed, you can feel much more energized all day long. This has such a positive effect on your life so you are able to do what you love and live life to the fullest.
The most common causes of fatigue that I see in my practice are:
- Stress – One of your main stress hormones is cortisol. Cortisol should be high in the morning and then gradually lower over the span of the day. With stress, the natural rhythm of your cortisol is shifted and fatigue is one of the most common outcomes.
- Digestive issues – Your body spends a lot of energy digesting food. When there are issues like food sensitivities, suboptimal stomach acid levels or improper blood sugar levels, the result is a sluggish mind and body.
- Low functioning thyroid – Your thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland that is in charge of many bodily functions including metabolism and energy production. Some symptoms of a low functioning thyroid are fatigue, weight gain, dry skin, brittle nails and hair loss. Your thyroid can be affected by your stress hormone (cortisol), as well as imbalanced female hormones (like estrogen and progesterone).
- Low iron – This is especially common in women with heavy menstrual cycles. Iron helps you transport oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. If you can imagine how tiring holding your breath is – having low iron is that same stress to your body!
How do you combat fatigue?
- Prioritize self-care – I know this is a tough one. Most of us live a busy life and it’s difficult to make time to take care of ourselves. A simple exercise that can help is to take 30 seconds to ask yourself “what do I need right now?” A 20-minute catnap? A cup of herbal tea? A 5-minute walk around the block? Listen to what your body is trying to tell you and then do what you can to give yourself the attention you deserve.
- Optimize your digestion – If you are bloated, or your bowel movements don’t feel complete, don’t ignore it! These are signs from your body that there is something else going on. Take a look at your diet – are you eating enough protein? Or do you think you have food sensitivities? Listen to your stomach –
itsgrowling for a reason.
- Practice good sleep hygiene – Avoid electronics close to bedtime, reserve your bed for sleeping and not working in and get exposure to natural sunlight during the day. All of these tips work to set your circadian rhythm into a good pattern, which encourages deep sleep through the night.
- Get routine blood work done – did you know that Naturopathic Doctors can order blood work for you? Make sure you are getting the correct screening done so that your health is properly assessed on a regular basis.
There are many causes of fatigue and it can take time to start feeling better. However, I truly believe that no one should feel fatigued on a daily basis. To get a thorough assessment on why you may not be feeling optimally energized, come in for an Initial Visit at The IV Health Centre so I can help you feel your best.
-Dr. Kay Wong, ND
To book in an Initial Visit with Dr. Kay Wong, ND, please visit theiv.ca or call us at 604-974-8999.