Living With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Although experts have not yet found a cure for CFS/ME, many people who have the illness are able to make lifestyle changes and find treatments that allow them to reduce or manage their symptoms. Improvement is possible by living within your limits and working with a doctor to find treatments that help you. There are also many CFS/ME support groups both online and in-person. Meeting with such a group might prove to be helpful.
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Supplements To Help Fight Tiredness And Fatigue
Experiencing chronic tiredness or fatigue can impact your daily life and the quality of your workouts, leading you to look into supplements for tiredness. When it comes to supplements, there are a lot on the market than can help provide an extra boost of energy for our bodies to function better. Some supplements for tiredness are quick acting and others have a long-term impact.
The supplements for tiredness discussed below range from basic B vitamins that you can get from your diet, to ancient herbs and common minerals. Some of these supplements might be part of a daily multivitamin or pre-workout blend, and others you might take on their own. Regardless, if youre suffering from occasional or even chronic tiredness and fatigue, these supplements might be just want you need to start feeling your best. Read on to decide which fatigue-fighting supplements might be right for you.
I Dont Have Insurance How Can The Affordable Care Act Help Me
If youre uninsured or have been denied coverage in the past for ME/CFS, the Health Insurance Marketplace may be able to provide you with access to affordable coverage. With health insurance plans in the Marketplace, you can no longer be refused coverage just because you have a pre-existing health condition. Medicaid and the Childrens Health Insurance Program also cant refuse to cover you or charge you more because of a health condition. They also cant charge women more than men. Learn more about the Affordable Care Act and the Health Insurance Marketplace at Healthcare.gov.
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Testing For Chronic Fatigue
It is important to test for nutrient deficiencies and possible underlying causes of your chronic fatigue. The Comprehensive Blood Analysis and Organic Acids Test can reveal insight into the numerous physiological and metabolic processes of your body.
With this valuable information, your functional medicine provider can develop a protocol to help improve your energy levels and reduce your chronic fatigue.
The Epidemic Of Chronic Fatigue
Chronic fatigue is when you are tired, worn out, drained and depleted most of the time. This profound and unrelenting exhaustion typically develops over time and it can be hard to pinpoint when it first started . It impacts your physical, emotional and psychological well-being.
Many people consider chronic fatigue normal and a necessary symptom of having a busy life. The fatigue has persisted for so long that they do not remember the last time they had energy or felt well.
At least 30% of American adults have chronic fatigue . Fatigue is a common complaint of a third of patients who go to their primary care doctors in the United States . Fatigue is more common in women than in men. It is associated with adverse health outcomes such as mortality, morbidity, and disability.
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Vitamin B12 And Folic Acid
Researchers have been exploring whether vitamin B12 injection or other means of supplementation, along with folic acid, can relieve CFS symptoms.
There is a biochemical theory as to how this may be of benefit: People with CFS show reduced methylation which plays a role in gene expression as well as regulation of many of the body’s systems, including detoxification, cardiovascular and the neurologic system. Vitamin B12 and folic acid both promote healthy methylation pathways.
A study of B12 injections in addition to oral folic acid supplementation found that some subjects with CFS responded well, while others had only a mild response. A better response was associated with more frequent injections, lack of use of opioids, and a certain genetic phenotype.
Another study looked at using B12 nasal drops as an alternative to injections in subjects with CFS. This study also found good response in two-thirds of the participants. The researchers demonstrated that those who had a better response had a higher blood level of B12 and were more physically active .
Treatment Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Drugs for depression, sleep, or pain if indicated
In most cases, symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome lessen over time. However, it often takes years for symptoms to subside, and not all symptoms disappear. People may recover more fully if they focus more on what function they can recover than on how much function they have lost.
Specific symptoms such as pain, depression, and poor sleep are treated. Cognitive behavioral therapy and gradual graded exercise, which have helped some people, may be worth trying.
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Find Ways To Relax And Reset Your Mind
For some people, taking 20 minutes during the afternoon to meditate can be enough to recharge. Maybe yoga or deep breathing is your thing. Whatever you do, find time to relax and reset your mind.
Chronic fatigue can impair your health and happiness, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. A chiropractor may help address any interference in your spine that may contribute to fatigue, as well as help manage the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome. While it may take some time, and some behavior changes, you can get your energy back and reclaim your health and wellbeing.
Children Young People And Me/cfs
ME/CFS can affect people of all ages, including the very young. Young people with ME/CFS, especially children under the age of ten, might have trouble knowing or articulating that something is wrong. They may not realise that their loss of stamina, or other symptoms they are experiencing, are not normal. Alternatively, they may not have the words to describe what they are feeling.
For both younger children and teenagers, schooling can be affected but ME/CFS is not school refusal. While school refusal can often be accompanied by physical complaints , and these complaints may tend to disappear when the young person stays home, the pattern is different with ME/CFS. In a young person with ME/CFS, some symptoms never ease and symptom exacerbation is triggered by activity. In ME/CFS, symptoms are likely to be worse after school attendance, and can reduce with pacing and rest, which includes time away from school or during holidays.
Some young people with ME/CFS can continue to attend school, and others may be too unwell for regular classroom attendance. Parents, healthcare providers, schools and the child or teenager need to work together to come up with a plan for the young persons continued education. This plan needs to take into account the energy limits of ME/CFS. Being creative and flexible is key and might include things like fewer subjects or school from home.
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Identify Treatments Youve Tried
In addition to tracking the symptoms you have experienced, keep a list of treatments you have tried. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides a medications and supplements list you can use to track your medications, their dosage, how well they help, and if you experienced side effects. Write a separate list of other treatments you have tried beyond medications and supplements, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, exercise, acupuncture, or meditation.
A Reboot For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Research
Name a remedy, and chances are that Elizabeth Allen has tried it: acupuncture, antibiotics, antivirals, Chinese herbs, cognitive behavioural therapy and at least two dozen more. She hates dabbling in so many treatments, but does so because she longs for the healthy days of her past. The 34-year-old lawyer was a competitive swimmer at an Ivy-league university when she first fell ill with chronic fatigue syndrome, 14 years ago. Her meticulous records demonstrate that this elusive malady is much worse than ordinary exhaustion. Last year, I went to 117 doctor appointments and I paid $18,000 in out-of-pocket expenses, she says.
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Eliminate Sugar And Processed Or Packaged Foods
Eat a candy bar and your energy will usually plummet soon after. Sugar and other refined carbohydrates give you a little shot of energy, but at a huge expense: Those blood sugar spikes nosedive quickly, leaving you feeling drained. If eliminating sugar completely is too challenging, gradually trade it for lower-sugar foods, like berries, to transition off sugar. Eat nuts instead of chips or cookies.
Increase Potassium And Magnesium Intake
Research shows that both potassium and magnesium can help improve the symptoms associated with chronic fatigue syndrome.
In a study published in the UK medical journal The Lancet, chronic fatigue syndrome patients were found to have low magnesium levels that accounted for a low red blood cell count.
In this study, patients that were treated with magnesium supplements self-reported improved energy levels, a more balanced emotional state and less pain. At the end of the six-week study, all patients that were given magnesium had their red cell magnesium levels return to normal.
If you have chronic fatigue syndrome, consider adding these magnesiumrich foods to add to your diet: spinach, chard, pumpkin seeds, yogurt and kefir, almonds, black beans, avocados, figs, dark chocolate and bananas.
These delicious foods can help you overcome chronic fatigue, one of the symptoms of a magnesium deficiency, and support healthy nerve function, healthy blood sugar levels, blood pressure regulation, and much more. Its estimated that nearly 80 percent of Americans are currently deficient in this essential mineral.
Potassium is responsible for proper electrolyte balance in the body. Potassium-rich foods include avocados, spinach, sweet potatoes, coconut water, kefir and yogurt, white beans, bananas, acorn squash, dried apricots and mushrooms.
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Etiology Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Etiology of CFS is unknown. No infectious, hormonal, immunologic, or psychiatric cause has been established. Among the many proposed infectious causes, Epstein-Barr virus, Lyme disease, candidiasis, and cytomegalovirus have been proven not to cause CFS. Similarly, there are no allergic markers and no immunosuppression.
Some people who have recovered from COVID-19 infection COVID-19 COVID-19 is an acute, sometimes severe, respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. COVID-19 was first reported in late 2019 in Wuhan, China and has since spread extensively… read more have become “long-haulers” with persistent symptoms. Some of these symptoms result from organ damage from the infection and/or treatment, and others may be from posttraumatic stress disorder Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Posttraumatic stress disorder is recurring, intrusive recollections of an overwhelming traumatic event recollections last > 1 month and begin within 6 months of the event. The pathophysiology… read more . In addition, in some patients COVID-19 seems to trigger typical CFS, but further study is needed to confirm this association and determine causality.
S To Overcome Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is a chronic illness characterized by extreme fatigue that lasts for more than six months. This fatigue cannot be explained away by an underlying medical condition. In fact, one of the diseases principle challenges is that its impossible to diagnose with laboratory tests. However, some professionals believe it is closely related to adrenal fatigue or system wide inflammation of the body.
The process for diagnosis usually begins with ruling out possible underlying diseases and chronic conditions until the only choice left is chronic fatigue syndrome. Left untreated, it decreases stamina, memory and concentration.
Chronic fatigue syndrome can result in strained relationships with friends and family, especially when it remain undiagnosed and/or untreated. Guilt, anxiety and anger are all common emotional responses for those fighting chronic fatigue.
Currently, over 1 million Americans are suffering from this debilitating illness that manifests with a lack of energy and motivation, and women are 24 times more likely than men to be diagnosed.
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How Is Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/chronic Fatigue Syndrome Diagnosed
Your doctor diagnoses ME/CFS by performing a mental and physical examination. Doctors will ask about your medical history and order blood and urine tests to check for infection. In many cases, doctors refer people with suspected ME/CFS to other specialists to rule out other illnesses that could be causing symptoms.
For your doctor to diagnose ME/CFS, you must have these 3 symptoms:
- Severe fatigue lasting at least 6 months that does not improve with rest or sleep
- Difficulty sleeping
- Fatigue that gets worse after mental or physical exercise
Additionally, you must have at least 1 of the following symptoms:
- Orthostatic intolerance
Concluding Remarks And Future Directions
This review suggests that the beneficial effects of nutritional supplements are not random, but that their action is due to the removal of one of the causes of the CFS/ME. There is evidence that supplements may benefit CFS/ME patients therefore, nutritional supplements should be recommended, at least in CFS/ME patients with a biochemically proven deficiency. Studies investigating nutritional interventions in CFS/ME remain very limited most studies have had small sample sizes, and lacked long term followup . Despite the relative consistency in case definition, the studies differed with regard to inclusion and exclusion criteria and reporting participants’ sociodemographic characteristics and clinical features . This heterogeneity in study design makes the application of the findings to the clinical setting more difficult. Therefore, longerterm RCTs in homogeneous populations that use more specific case criteria are now warranted.
In agreement with several previous studies, pacing was consistently shown to be the most helpful treatment, CBT was useful for some patients but not all for all graded training may cause the condition to worsen. However, the results must be interpreted with care, as the participants are not a representative sample.
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Support Your Immune System
Chronic infections may be an underlying cause of chronic fatigue, but they are widely undiagnosed.
What to do: In addition to getting tested for underlying infections, consider blends of Siberian ginseng, samento, sarsaparilla, guaiacum, astragalus, resveratrol, and cat’s claw for their immune-strengthening properties.
Foods Known To Dramatically Improve Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Chronic fatigue syndrome is characterized by extreme fatigue that does not let up with rest. The cause is unknown, though theories include hormonal imbalance, improper diet, physiological stress, viral infections, and thyroid problems. Symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome are memory loss, chronic fatigue, and disrupted sleep. Headaches, unexplained muscle pain, and viral infections are also associated with chronic fatigue syndrome. Many foods can serve as an alternative treatment to help reduce levels of exhaustion. Get to know the best ones for this now.
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What Is The Treatment For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
A treatment plan for CFS aims to relieve your symptoms to improve your quality of life. The plan should include:
- a plan for how to manage stress
- a very gentle exercise plan
- a nutritious diet, with regular meals/snacks to keep up your energy
- supplements if your diet lacks a good balance or if your blood tests indicate deficiencies
- a sleep management plan, which may include medication
- physiotherapy to help with pain and good breathing techniques
- medication for pain
- psychological input if you are particularly stressed or depressed.
Take A Good Multivitamin
Many sufferers of CFS have many different deficiencies of different things, so take good multivitamins and minerals every day to try and keep such complications to a minimum.
People with CFS often particularly need more magnesium, calcium, iron, folic acid and B vitamins, so try to identify a supplement which can meet all of your needs, or take a combination of pills.
However, try not to combine pills in a way that means you take two pills which both have your 100% RDA of one vitamin or in it is possible to overdose, even on vitamins.
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Have A Good Sleep Routine
It may sound obvious, but to manage chronic fatigue syndrome you really have to make sure that you get plenty of sleep.
The best way to ensure that you do this is to formulate a proper daily schedule and stick to it. Work out what time you are going to go to bed each night, allowing a minimum of 8 hours for you to get your vital sleep, and factor in some down time beforehand, where you relax and avoid caffeine and staring at computer screens.
Try and go to sleep and get up at the same time every single day, even at the weekend, so that you set your body clock to a good rhythm and keep it that way.
The Bottom Line On Massage And Chronic Fatigue
Massage is a natural complementary therapy that can benefit certain people with chronic fatigue. And thanks to its sleep and stress-relieving benefits, you may find that it helps with your overall energy levels, even if you arent diagnosed with CFS.
Be sure to check with your healthcare team before trying massage, especially if you want to use it alongside a current treatment routine. Once youve got the green light, you can work with a masseuse or start a self-massage routine to reap the wellness benefits at home.
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What Questions Should I Ask My Doctor
- Take along a list of all the symptoms you are experiencing in case you forget some of them during your talk with the doctor or nurse.
- Talk about how much you can do at work or school and around the house.
- Ask if there are any financial supports or services you could apply for.
- Ask for help with pain, sleep and remaining active if these are problems for you.
- Ask about what you should be eating.