Affecting up to 2.5 million adults in the United States, chronic fatigue is a common condition that can significantly lower a person’s quality of life. While everyone experiences bouts if tiredness, some people experience persistent tiredness lasting for months or even years. Known as chronic fatigue, it can lead to high blood pressure, depression, anxiety and fluctuations in your blood sugar levels. Today, we’re going to explore some of the most common causes of chronic fatigue.
#1) Thyroid Disorder
Thyroid disorders have been shown to cause chronic fatigue. A ductless gland located in the neck, the thyroid is responsible for producing and releasing hormones that regulate your body’s metabolism. Hypothyroidism, however, is a disorder in which the thyroid gland doesn’t produce a sufficient amount of hormones, which can lead to symptoms such as insomnia, anxiety and fatigue. If you’re worried that a thyroid disorder is causing your chronic fatigue, schedule an appointment to your thyroid levels tested.
#2) Food Sensitivity or Allergy
If you’re allergic or sensitive to a particular food and unknowingly continue to consume that food, you may experience chronic fatigue. People who are lactose intolerant, for example shouldn’t eat or drink dairy, while people who suffer from celiac disease shouldn’t consume gluten-based foods or beverages. If you consume something to which you are sensitive or allergic, it may send your body into a state of distress, manifesting as prolonged tiredness that doesn’t seem to go away.
#3) Mold Exposure
There isn’t a single, specific underlying cause of chronic fatigue. Rather, medical experts have identified more than a dozen causes — and they are still discovering new causes of chronic fatigue. In 2013, one study found a correlation between mold exposure and chronic fatigue, suggesting that people who are exposed to high levels of mold spores on a regular basis are more likely to develop chronic fatigue than their counterparts.
#4) Hormonal Imbalance
According to WebMD, hormonal balance is one of the most commonly reported symptoms of chronic fatigue. While some hormones have an energizing effect that deters fatigue, others have a more calming effect that increases fatigue. The hormone progesterone, for example, can make you tired, especially if your body produces too much of it. Your body needs just the right amount of hormones to maintain a healthy, functional state. If your hormone levels are imbalanced, it could lead to chronic fatigue and other unwanted symptoms.
#5) Viral Infection
You might be surprised to learn that a viral infection can cause chronic fatigue. Specifically, medical experts have identified the Epstein-Barr virus as well as the leukemia virus as being potential precursors to chronic fatigue. Viral infections such as these force your body to use its energy to fight the infection, which can leave you feeling tired and drowsy. The good news is that once the virus has been eliminated, you should regain your lost energy. But until that happens, you may experience persistent stretches of fatigue.
#6) Severe Stress
It’s important to manage your stress if you’re suffering from chronic fatigue. We all experience stress; it’s our body’s fight-or-flight defense mechanism that’s helped humankind survive for hundreds of thousands of years. When stressed for a long period of time, though, changes will occur in your body, such as increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. High cortisol levels will initially give you a boost of energy, but these effects will quickly subside, eventually causing fatigue to set in.
#7) Nutrient Deficiency
There are certain nutrient deficiencies that can influence your risk of chronic fatigue. If you don’t consume enough vitamin B3 in your diet, for instance, you’ll probably feel tired more frequently. Also known as niacin, vitamin B3 promotes a healthy cardiovascular system by stimulating blood flow throughout your body. Studies have shown that people with a vitamin B3 deficiency are more likely to suffer from chronic fatigue than people who consume an adequate amount of this vitamin in their diet.
Iron deficiency has also been shown to cause chronic fatigue. A key component of hemoglobin, iron helps transport oxygen from your lungs through your body. But approximately 9% to 12% of Americans don’t consume enough iron in their diet, placing them at risk for symptoms of iron deficiency such as headaches, dry skin, restless leg syndrome and chronic fatigue.
To increase your intake of iron, consume more of the following foods:
- Dark chocolate
- Pumpkin seeds
#8) Overactive Immune System
According to a study cited by The Guardian, an overactive immune system may play a role in the onset of chronic fatigue. The immune system is responsible for attacking potentially harmful bacteria, viruses, fungi and other foreign invaders. Sometimes, however, it overreacts to an otherwise harmless substance. Researchers believe that an overactive immune system can cause chronic fatigue by alternating hormone and chemical levels in the body.
If you’re suffering from chronic fatigue, contact Atlanta Chiro and Wellness today. We offer specialized services to help treat chronic fatigue and other related conditions.Share