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Why Am I So Tired All the Time?

Sep 01, 2023
Why Am I So Tired All the Time?
When you wake up groggy and can’t shake off the sleepiness, it’s impossible to perform at your best. Tiredness could be a sign of chronic fatigue syndrome or another issue. Before you can feel rested, you must find out why you’re not resting.

Sleep is an essential pillar of health. During sleep, your body is extremely active, performing activities such as repairing injured cells and tissues and detoxifying your body through the glymphatic system. Just a few of the tasks your body performs during sleep are:

  • Eliminates beta-amyloid from brain
  • Distributes glucose, lipids, and amino acids throughout body
  • Consolidates the day’s memories
  • Repairs and restores cells

Women and men over 18 should aim for 7-9 hours of good sleep per night. If you can't get enough sleep, or if you wake up tired despite your 7-9 hours, you need to find out why. 

Lack of deep, restorative rest raises your risk for serious conditions and diseases, including stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, and cancer.

At Natural Health Specialists, our holistic medicine specialist, Christopher J. Fischer, ND, wants you to have the energy you need to enjoy your life and accomplish your goals. After testing and diagnosing your fatigue, he customizes a treatment plan.

Are you tired all the time? Here are a few reasons why you might be.

You have chronic fatigue syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis, is a debilitating illness that affects up to 2.5 million women, men, and children in the United States. About 90% of them, though, have not been diagnosed. Women are more likely than men to have CFS, as are older people.

Mild cases of CFS may make it harder to accomplish daily tasks. Severe cases may make it impossible to do so. In fact, some people with CFS can’t even get out of bed. 

The main symptom linked with CFS is that your fatigue persists, even if you get a sufficient amount of sleep. Another hallmark is fatigue that worsens after exertion, such as exercise or solving a difficult problem.

Often, CFS develops after an infection or a stressful period. People with CFS also seem to have difficulty producing energy on a cellular level. Chronic stress, which alters your body chemistry, may also contribute.

In addition, many of the other causes of fatigue (listed below) may be factors in your CFS. Treating underlying causes of CFS as well as learning to pace yourself so that you stay within your own energy envelope can help you manage CFS.

You have sleep apnea

Sleep apnea is a common sleep breathing disorder in which you stop breathing for seconds at a time, multiple times per night. Apneas restrict air flow by 90% for at least 10 seconds. Hypopnea is partially restricted air flow of at least 30% that lasts for at least 10 seconds.

Although up to four apneas per hour is considered normal, when you have more than that, your body never enters a fully rested state. Therefore, your glymphatic system can’t clear your brain or other organs of toxins. Your cells don’t get repaired and restored. Your energy isn’t renewed.

Signs that you have sleep apnea include snoring that wakes you up at night, a sore throat in the morning, and persistent fatigue. 

You can manage the most common type of sleep apnea — obstructive sleep apnea — with an oral appliance that keeps your airway open during sleep or with a continuous positive air pressure (CPAP) machine.

You have nutritional deficiencies or food sensitivities

Your brain needs nutrients in order to function optimally and also to enter the deep state of sleep it needs to clear amyloids, repair cells, and consolidate memories. A common deficiency that affects sleep is a magnesium deficiency. 

You need enough of sleep-friendly nutrients, including:

  • GABA
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamins A, C, D, E, and K

Food sensitivities also can affect your ability to get quality sleep. When your gut is irritated because you eat the wrong types of foods for your body, you may develop leaky gut syndrome, which increases inflammation. Inflammation is associated with insomnia.

Your hormones are unbalanced

Women often have trouble sleeping during perimenopause and menopause, due to a lack of estrogen and other hormones. Men, too, may develop insomnia as they age and their testosterone production slows down.

In addition to sex hormones, insufficient thyroid hormone can disturb your sleep. You may need herbal formulations that help your body produce healthy levels of hormones again.

You’re dealing with toxins 

Your body may be fatigued because it’s being gradually poisoned by heavy metals, mold, or other contaminants. 

Dr. Fischer helps you detoxify your body to alleviate the stress, then prescribes dietary changes and supplements to help you rebuild your energy reserves and repair the damage done by toxins.

Start your journey toward deep rest and renewed energy by subscribing to our new client special for monthly telehealth sessions to resolve chronic fatigue. Although we’re based in East Northport, New York, Dr. Fischer sees all patients virtually. For an appointment, call 631-742-6697.