Chronic Fatigue

Chronic Fatigue

If you’re feeling tired all the time and find yourself unable to focus due to exhaustion, functional medicine can help restore your energy by understanding the underlying issues that cause fatigue.

What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), or myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), is a complicated disorder characterized by extreme fatigue that a single underlying medical condition can’t explain. The fatigue may worsen with physical or mental activity but doesn’t improve with rest.

Fatigue Symptoms?

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms consist of profound fatigue, sleep abnormalities, pain, and a multitude of other symptoms that are typically made worse by exertion.

In addition to fatigue, other symptoms include:

  • Fatigue 12 to 48 hours after exercise that can last for days to weeks
  • Un-refreshing sleep
  • Trouble remembering, learning new things, concentrating, or decision-making
  • Dizziness or fainting when standing up
  • Rapid heart rate with activity
  • Alternating between sweating too much and not sweating at all
  • Feeling burned out
  • Depression or shifting moods
  • Joint aches and muscle pains
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Migraine headaches

Causes of Chronic Fatigue?

The causes of chronic fatigue are varied but can consist of the following:

  1. Chronic illness, such as Hypothyroidism, Lyme Disease, Adrenal Fatigue, Asthma, Diabetes, Obstructive Sleep Apnea, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Infections, and Heart Disease.
  2. Diet imbalances, poor gut health,  and micronutrient deficiencies.
  3. Lifestyle factors like stress and physical activity. 
  4. Certain medications may cause fatigue as a side effect.

Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Chronic Fatigue

Mitochondria are in every human cell, producing most of the body’s energy.

However, research shows that the mitochondria do much more than produce energy. The mitochondria is heavily involved in many body processes, and when it is not working well or is dysfunctional, it will lead to oxidative stress, free radical formation, and inflammation. What’s more, mitochondrial dysfunction shares many of the same symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome.

Functional Medicine Approach for Chronic Fatigue

No single test exists to confirm a diagnosis of chronic fatigue syndrome. Often, patients need various medical tests to rule out other health problems with similar symptoms.

Conventional treatment for chronic fatigue relies on prescription drugs to manage symptoms. Common drugs include pain medications, sleep aids, and antidepressants – all with potential side effects.

At Peak Health Institute, we use the functional medicine approach to chronic fatigue. That means we look for the root cause behind chronic fatigue symptoms for each individual. Once we identify the causes of a patient’s fatigue, we create a treatment plan and help the patient regain health and improve their quality of life.

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