Fatigue. It’s something we all experience at some point throughout our day. Feelings of mental and physical exhaustion, being tired in the morning even after a full night’s sleep, and that light-headed “spacey” feeling. Experts report that 10% of people globally are suffering from chronic fatigue. Chronic tiredness affects females more than males.
With the demands placed on women such as full-time work, being the primary caregivers, and running households, it’s no wonder so many of us accept this “tired” feeling as only natural. As excellent multi-taskers, we may ignore our fatigue until the tell-tale signs emerge such as binge-eating, weight-gain, and depression, which prompt us to finally start listening to our bodies. Left untreated, chronic fatigue could lead to increased risk of disease, premature aging, and a compromised immune system. Because there are endless causes of fatigue, it is important to get to the root cause of your exhaustion and determine the best treatment.
1. Lack of Sleep
The brain requires sleep to recuperate and reenergize. If you suffer from a sleep disorder or your sleep is routinely interrupted, you are more prone to feeling that “brain fog” upon waking up. For those who suffer from serious sleep deprivation, that foggy feeling doesn’t disappear after a cup of coffee. It sounds obvious, but 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep has been proven to be the best way to rejuvenate your mind and keep it functioning.
2. Nutritional Deficiencies
Magnesium, vitamin B12, and amino acids are the most important vitamins our brain needs to remain strong. The body being deficient in these vitamins as well as dehydration could lead to fatigue throughout your day. Take an inventory of your diet and make sure that you are eating foods rich in these vitamins. Wild salmon, blueberries, and avocados are a few of the many “superfoods” that can increase your odds of maintaining a healthy brain.
Perhaps one of the most underestimated health threats, stress manifests as physical symptoms, brain fatigue being one of them. With the exception of increased stress due to a specific event such as the loss of a loved one, everyday stress should not produce brain fog. If it does, this could be a warning sign of a more serious problem. Make stress reduction a priority in your life. Discover what works for you, whether it’s exercise, meditation, or counseling. The quality of your brain function and overall satisfaction in life can dramatically increase.
4. Diseases & Conditions
Those with diabetes have a higher risk of brain fog due to constantly fluctuating levels of glucose which is the primary source of energy for the brain. Additionally, fluctuating hormones, a common symptom in women with Menopause can lead to brain fog. Those diagnosed with disorders such as fibromyalgia, lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome, and multiple sclerosis also experience fatigue and fogginess as a common symptom. Understanding how to regulate the imbalances in your body based on your condition can combat fatigue and lead to dramatic improvements.
Whether prescribed or over-the-counter, certain medications have confusion and fogginess inherent in their side effects. Brain fog is a common side effect in drugs used to treat high blood pressure, chronic pain, and allergies. Determining whether your drowsiness is caused by these medications will allow you to find better treatment options or stop taking them altogether.
– Christine Gomolka, Writer, Sales Professional, Teacher