Fatigue can have many different causes, so it’s important for us to effectively explore the underlying factors that could be contributing to your fatigue.
6 most common causes:
1. Adrenal Fatigue - This starts as a subclinical condition, which occurs when our adrenals, 2 walnut sized glands that sit on top of our kidneys, are over wrought or stressed. Our Adrenals produce the hormones cortisol, adrenaline and nor-adrenaline. These are known as our ‘stress hormones’ they help us deal and respond to stressful situations.
Cortisol is also used in the body as an anti-inflammatory, modulates blood sugar levels ensuring sustained energy.
We run a simple salivary cortisol test to assess your current cortisol levels and adrenal function.
If you are suffering from Adrenal Fatigue we can create a treatment protocol for you using herbal adaptagens useful for tonifying the kidneys and supporting their function, as well as nutritional medicine to assist appropriate adrenal and stress response. We will also look at lifestyle factors that assist in stress reduction and create positive fulfillment in your life. (Have a sneak peak at our Mindfulness resources here)
2. Hypothyroidism - The thyroid is a butterfly shaped gland that sits on the anterior side of the neck. It is responsible for releasing a number of hormonal messengers which stimulate many biochemical reactions in the body, including metabolism.
Hypothyroidism is another condition which can start with a subclinical presentation. This can cause major disruption in the body causing fatigue, slow metabolism, and weight gain amongst many other symptoms. If left untreated the condition can progress to goiter formation and in extreme cases Hashimoto’s Disease (an autoimmune disease of the thyroid gland)
There are a number of tests we can run to assess how your thyroid is functioning such as blood tests for Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH), fT4, fT3 and rT3, as well as urinary iodine loading and spot tests to see if iodine deficiency is a contributing factor.
From here we will create a treatment protocol for you which will assist to bring your thyroid markers back into the normal range utilising nutritional and herbal support, as well as assessing environmental and dietary factors such as intake of toxic halogens (i.e. fluoride, bromine) and iodine levels.
3. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – The USA Center for disease control defines Chronic Fatigue Syndrome as “A debilitating and complex disorder characterized by profound fatigue that is not improved by bed rest and that may be worsened by physical or mental activity. Symptoms affect several body systems and may include weakness, muscle pain, impaired memory and/or mental concentration, and insomnia, which can result in reduced participation in daily activities.”
Although the exact cause of CFS is not known, there are a number of factors which research has shown can contribute to the onset, these include:
• Viral infections
• Candida / Yeast infections
• Changes in the immune system (over or under active)
• Impaired gastrointestinal function
• Intense / Chronic physical or emotional stress
If you are affected by chronic fatigue it can be a very frustrating and fruitless journey when trying to receive help conventionally, therefore a lot of people turn to natural therapies and receive amazing results. We believe it is important to have a caring, supportive, qualified team around you who will help you step by step back to health – this includes family members, supportive friends and qualified health professionals. Our initial goal is to identify which possible cause may have triggered the onset and begin addressing it at this causative level, while also rebuilding your body’s natural energy production mechanisms such as mitochondrial activity and ATP (adenosine triphosphate) production. We work with diet, exercise and lifestyle as well as emotional support to provide you a complete and thorough treatment protocol that assists you back to a fully functioning life.
4.Chronic illness - Chronic conditions place a heavy burden on the body and it’s resources, which can deplete nutrients, oxygen and reduce the body’s production of ATP, which is what the body needs to create energy, and adversely affect mood.
Conditions that fall into this category include, but are not limited too:
• Long-term mental or behavioural conditions – incl. Dementia, Alzheimer’s, ADHD
• Irritable Bowel Syndrome
• Inflammatory Bowel Diseases incl. Crohn’s Disease, Coeliac Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, Diverticulitis
• Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic diseases are described as an illness that is prolonged in duration (longer than 3 months), does not often resolve spontaneously, and is rarely cured completely.
The Australian Government Department of Health and Aging states “Chronic diseases are leading causes of death and disability in Australia.”
If you are suffering from a chronic disease this is likely to be affecting your energy production as well as possibly mood and motivation. It’s important to get treatment to begin addressing this underlying chronic condition, reducing inflammation and start healing your body to prevent progression of the condition and increase energy.
We design individual treatment protocols based on your health history and current conditions, reducing symptoms and assisting your body back to homeostasis through providing naturopathic care, nutritional and herbal formulations and providing dietary and lifestyle support.
5. Improper Sleep Hygiene - Sleep Hygiene refers to the habits, environmental factors and practices that may influence the length and quality of ones sleep.
Poor quality, broken or inadequate amounts of sleep is a common cause of fatigue. Therefore the Australian Center for Education in Sleep recommends we ensure we are getting between 7 – 9 hours of sleep a night for optimal function and energy levels. Click here for more information on effective sleep hygiene.
6. Neurotransmitter & hormonal imbalances
Neurotransmitters are chemical messages that relay information between the brain and the body’s organs.
Neurotransmitters affect us emotionally, mentally and physically. Neurotransmitters control our sleep functions including falling asleep, entering the deep sleep cycle (REM), staying asleep and the waking process.
If someone has low serotonin or GABA levels, elevated levels of one or more excitatory neurotransmitters such as glutamate or a hormonal imbalance (low levels of melatonin or high levels of cortisone) this may cause sleep disturbances (and possibly anxiety) resulting in subsequent fatigue.
Common contributors to Neurotransmitter Imbalances:
- Prolonged stress
- Poor dietary habits (especially diets low in healthy proteins, as amino acids are essential building blocks in creating neurotransmitters)
- Environmental toxins (including household chemicals, BPA, air & water pollution, food additives like 952 / aspartame a known neurotoxin, GMO crops +)
- Drugs and medication (including OCP)
- Long term excess alcohol use
- We can assess neurotransmitter imbalances by running a simple questionnaire called a Mood Disorder Appraisal, which will help us identify where there may be deficiencies and possible excesses.
From here we can use nutritional and herbal support to gently assist your body back to a natural state of homeostasis. In balancing neurotransmitter function we can see a huge improvement in sleep onset & quality.
If you are suffering from fatigue we would love to help you today – our friendly staff are waiting to take your booking by calling 0416 775 530 or use the book now button below.