Everybody wants more energy: energy to do more, be more productive, get more done or just simply BE more. Another reason why we desire more energy is because most of us we feel tired all the time. According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists, at any given time one in five people feels unusually tired and one in 10 has chronic fatigue. You’d think that after evolving to fast-food-everything from having to hunt our own dinner, we’d have more energy to do a lot more things — but apparently not.
There are a number of reasons, some obvious and some dangerously subtle, why as a species we seem to lack so much energy. Most of our energy drainers can be categorized into three major groups: Fatigue caused by LIFESTYLE, fatigue caused by MEDICAL REASONS and fatigue caused by PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS. For the purpose of this article we are going to discuss a total of 7 reasons why you are always tired and what you can do about it.
FATIGUE CAUSED BY LIFESTYLE
It is no accident that as our lives have become more fast-paced, incidences of chronic fatigue are on the rise as well. Have we really steam rolled our lives into such a constant cycle of motion that we have become neglectful of the necessity of rest? Most psychologists seem to think so.
1. The Work Hard Play Hard Mentality
Seems like a good idea, until you turn 25 and discover you don’t have as much energy as you did when you first started partying at 16. A work hard play hard mentality may seem like something to aspire to. After all, don’t we all want to be successful and have fabulous fun while doing it?
The biggest problem with this mentality though is that with all the time we spend on working and partying we start to neglect our health. Give your body a much needed break by indulging in everything in moderation.
2. Unhealthy Eating Habits
Deficiencies of key nutrients, such as potassium and iron, could also cause unexplained tiredness. Also, indulging in junk food and sweets that rank high on the glycemic index could wreak havoc on your blood sugar levels. Spikes and dives in our blood sugar levels can cause fatigue over time.
Instead of snacking on sugary sweets, feast on fruit instead. The sugars in fruits are more complex and are lower on the glycemic index so they don’t affect your blood sugar levels as much. Plus, fruits are a great way to get your daily dose of nutrients and anti-oxidants.
FATIGUE CAUSED BY MEDICAL REASONS
Despite the significant contribution of the lifestyle we choose to lead in the quality of our energy through the day, lifestyle alone may not be solely at fault. Being constantly tired especially when you are getting enough eat or sleep may be a symptom of an underlying medical problem. This category is really the one to watch. You may just think you’re tired when in fact you are already sick.
Anemia is a very common cause of fatigue, especially in women. If you are getting enough rest, ample nutrition and exercise but are still tired you should consider getting some blood work done to see if you have anemia.
Anemia is easily fixed by taking iron supplements and eating iron rich foods.
4. Underactive Thyroid Gland
Having an underactive thyroid gland means you are not getting enough thyroid hormones in your body. This can make you feel constantly tired and may also cause aching muscles.
If you suspect that you have an underactive thyroid you should see your physician and have a blood test taken.
Being constantly tired no matter what you do is a symptom of uncontrolled diabetes. If you are experiencing chronic fatigue, an increased frequency of urination and your vision often becomes blurry – you should visit your physician as there is a possibility you have diabetes.
6. Heart Disease
If you are female, constantly tired and can never seem to keep warm it is time to have yourself checked for heart problems. Tiredness is a common sign of a heart disease. If exercise exacerbates the problem, you should definitely see a specialist.
FATIGUE CAUSED BY PSYCHOLOGICAL DISTRESS
Another thing to look out for when you are feeling inexplicably tired is psychological distress. Quite a number of psychological diseases include chronic fatigue as a symptom.
7. Depression and Anxiety
People with depression often describe their situation as being constantly tired and never having the energy to do anything despite having the desire to do it. If these feelings of exhaustion are accompanied with loss of appetite, sadness, insomnia and a sudden disinterest in things you used to like – you may be depressed.
Seek professional help. Being depressed is no joke and the weight of the disorder on your psyche has devastating consequences for your energy levels and your body in general.
Tiredness, especially if it is chronic, is the body’s way of communicating to you that something is wrong, that something is out of balance. The best way to address fatigue is to keep everything in balance. Have a little fun here and there, but don’t forget to give your body the attention it so needs and deserves.